Packers and Stockyards Act
The USDA plans to strengthen the Packers and Stockyards Act. The nearly 100 year old law was intended to protect livestock farmers from unfair and anti-competitive practices in the meat market.
Over the next few months the USDA will take three actions to improve rules. The first will try to provide more clarity to strengthen enforcement against unfair practices or prejudices. The second will propose a poultry specific grower tournament system rule. Finally, it will re-propose a rule clarifying producers do not have to demonstrate harm to competition to use the packers and stockyards act. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack says since the Act is so old, modern market dynamics need to be taken into consideration…
European trade meeting
US negotiators will meet up with Europeans this week over trade. Trade Representative Katherine Tai will be there, saying she will take part in tough conversations to resolve the 16 year dispute between Boeing and Airbus subsidies and find a path forward on steel and aluminum.
The talks also give a chance to talk about major trade deals that could impact agriculture, like the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.
Farm debt relief on hold
A federal judge ordered a halt to some farm debt relief. The USDA is providing nearly $4 billion dollars in loan debt relief payments intended for Black, Indigenous and Hispanic farmers. white farmers argue that is discriminatory and will cause irreparable harm..
The USDA says the relief is needed because of systematic disadvantages and or discrimination of those farmers. The debt-relief program is on hold for now as courts consider injunction requests by attorneys for 12 white farmers from nine states.
A look at the markets
Analyst Jamey Kohake has a look at the markets:
“Starting the week off in the row crops not a very good sight at all, gap lower opening last night and been trading sharply lower pretty much ever since, we have been trading at lower levels in early night and early on this morning as well, but on the eight to 10 day forecast that came out over the weekend we’re seeing a front set up in the easter Midwest coming later this week early next week, and looks to be moderating the temperatures as well. And just seeing a lot of long liquidation ahead of that weather report. Over to the meat market, feeders a few bucks higher, fats a buck higher, looking good this morning with a sharply lower corn market, cash looks to be firmer this week, boxes probably going to top out here this week, the key will be to keep narrowing the basis futures versus cash on the fats, get that narrowed up in here, coming into expiration in the June contract. Over to hogs, a buck, buck and a half lower, higher corn trade I look for hogs to rebound yet harder this week, with higher cutouts and higher cash again.”
Colfax auction results
The Colfax sheep and goat auction on Saturday saw a sale of 545 head of sheep. Feeder lambs fetched the day’s high average price of $2.58 per pound, while fed lambs averaged $2.17 per pound.
There were 92 head of goats at the auction.. saw a high average price ranging from $170 to $570 per head.