In a recent interview on KTIV-TV (Sioux City, Iowa), Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, the former Iowa Governor, talked about presidential politics on the eve of second presidential debate. It was noted that Sec. Vilsack was not speaking as a government official in the interview, but on behalf of the “Obama for America Campaign.”
A video replay of the interview is available here:
Recall that GOP Presidential Nominee Mitt Romney addressed farm policy issues in Iowa last week, a recap of Gov. Romney’s presentation is available here.
A recent column by Sec. Vilsack on rural and agriculture issues can be found here, while Iowa State Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey indicated in a recent column that Gov. Romney was best for rural America.
The ERS report contained a detailed summary of recent USDA projections regarding feed grains and noted that, “U.S. corn production for 2012/13 is lowered 21 million bushels as lower yield more than offsets higher area in this month’s forecasts. The yield slips 0.8 bushels per acre to 122.0 bushels, and harvested area advances 0.4 million acres to 87.7 million. Corn supplies for 2012/13 are projected 214 million bushels lower, mostly reflecting lower carryin based on September 1 stocks. Projected exports are reduced 100 million bushels. Corn ending stocks for 2012/13 are projected 114 million bushels lower at 619 million. The projected average price received by growers is reduced 10 cents on each end of the range to $7.10- $8.50 per bushel due to lower-than-expected early season cash and futures prices.
“Reduced production and beginning stocks leave world coarse grain supplies for 2012/13 projected down 11.0 million tons this month to the lowest level since 2007/08. However, foreign corn supplies in 2012/13 are projected to be record high at 673.5 million tons. Brazil’s corn exports for trade year 2012/13 are raised over 30 percent this month to a record 19.0 million tons, supporting an increase in forecast corn trade and a sharp reduction in U.S. exports to the lowest level in almost 40 years.”
The ERS report included this graphic relating to U.S. ending stocks (click on the graphs for full, expanded view):
Yesterday’s report also included this graph depicting U.S. corn supply, as well as a graph showing cash prices for corn in Central Illinois.
In a column published in yesterday’s Des Moines Register, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack indicated that, “I was surprised at the Iowa View published Oct. 10 and attributed to Iowa Secretary of Agriculture and Land Stewardship Bill Northey. Unfortunately, his essay makes assertions that are inaccurate, misleading and just plain wrong.
“Here are the facts: President Obama has a strong record of supporting America’s farmers, ranchers and rural America. Today, agriculture is thriving. Record farm income, record agricultural exports and declining rural unemployment all demonstrate the strength of the president’s support of rural America.
“Today, there is a record amount of bio-fuel production. The administration recently announced new renewable fuel standard targets that will increase bio-diesel production, a decision praised by Iowa soybean producers. And he has increased the amount of ethanol that can be blended into gasoline. President Obama remains a consistent supporter of the bio-fuel industry.”
More specifically with respect to the executive branch and agricultural issues, a news release yesterday from the American Soybean Association (ASA) stated that, “With the national spotlight on the race for the White House, the [ASA] reached out to President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney for each candidate’s points of view on issues critical to soybean farmers. President Obama and Governor Romney offered their positions on the farm bill and crop insurance, estate tax, biodiesel, biotechnology, trade, research, regulations, and transportation and infrastructure.”
Yesterday’s release noted that, “Both candidates expressed a desire to pass a comprehensive farm bill as quickly as possible.”
The full responses from each campaign are available by clicking here.