FarmPolicy

December 12, 2019

Keith Good, Editor Of Farm Policy, Winds Down His News Service- Content That Mattered

Categories: Uncategorized

Thanks to Owen Taylor— who posted this update on Friday, April 3 at his blog.

Keith Good, Editor Of Farm Policy, Winds Down His News Service– Content That Mattered

Keith Good wrapped up his FarmPolicy web coverage this week. For the last 12-plus years he has kept the agricultural community informed about the latest developments in Washington and farm-related trends in the U.S. and abroad.

Through the years, he tracked down thousands of articles and pieces of analysis, summarized them in a keen, precise way and then gave his readers the links needed if they cared to read more.

It looked simple enough, but anyone who’s ever tried to do that kind of reportage will tell you it’s arduous work. Keith did it well and did bushel baskets of it year after year.

He graciously allowed us to include his findings on our web pages, for which we are grateful beyond measure. We have ways of tracking web activity and always saw a flock of clicks to Keith’s reports early every morning as soon as we posted them. He developed a following in all parts of this republic, based on the web traffic he generated.

Debra L. Ferguson, our news editor and a partner in this company, recently referred to Keith as “the best-informed man in agriculture.” In the years that we have carried Keith’s reports, she probably has read nearly every word that he’s written, so she speaks with some authority. He made her and thousands of other people better informed along the way.

Keith looked at farm policy and the broader ag landscape from several vantage points. He earned a masters in ag economics and became an attorney who, among other things, is licensed to practice in Washington, D.C.

He indicated sometime back that he was winding down his coverage. We hoped he would change his mind but now have the final word.

By Owen Taylor

Last Report: Personal Note; Ag Economy; Trade; and, Regulations

Personal Note

I remember the time in 2002 I tried to explain to my wife an idea I had about summarizing newspaper articles relating to farm policy issues for busy people at work who didn’t have time to read as much as they wanted to.

Now the time has come to stop writing the daily reports.

Thanks so much to the over 200 individuals who took time the past couple of weeks to share with me their appreciation for the reports; here are reflective examples of what these very thoughtful notes from readers said:

“Everyone always says ‘make sure you get the farm policy update’ because everyone knows it’s the best.”

You’ve been a must-read for thousands.”

“I’ve shared your site with dozens of people over the years, always saying ‘sign up for Farmpolicy.com. It is the very best source for ag news anywhere.’ This is one of the few places where information is gathered and shared without commentary.”

“Your willingness to provide this early-morning update day after day, without fail, has been a wonderful contribution.”

“I have marveled at the discipline and effort required to bring ‘farm policy’ to my east coast desk early in the day.”

“Your daily surveys are the best-written, most comprehensive, and most objective news source that I have seen for a long time.”

“In addition, your integrity in reporting is deeply appreciated. There is a lot that gets said in ag circles, and you screened out the chaff. Your accuracy in reporting was always highly valued as well. Only you could have provided that unique combination of an ag economist, an ag attorney, and a journalist. The ag community has richly benefited from your dedication and commitment to FarmPolicy.com.”

“Distilling the information from numerous sources, sites, and newspapers is an overwhelming task that you accomplished with great professionalism. What you provided was accurate, complete, and extremely valuable.”

And Rep. Adrian Smith (R., Neb.) tweeted yesterday: “Thank you to Keith Good for his years of ‪#ag reporting. Sad to see ‪@FarmPolicy end, but I wish him all the best in his new chapter.”

Thanks to all for reading FarmPolicy.com.

(more…)

Rep. Adrian Smith- FarmPolicy.com Comment

Categories: Uncategorized

kg

Thursday Morning Update: Ag Economy; Trade; and, Regulations

Remember, FarmPolicy.com ends tomorrow.

Agricultural Economy

Adam Nagourney reported on the front page of today’s New York Times that, “Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday ordered mandatory water use reductions for the first time in California’s history, saying the state’s four-year drought had reached near-crisis proportions after a winter of record-low snowfalls.

“Mr. Brown, in an executive order, directed the State Water Resources Control Board to impose a 25 percent reduction on the state’s 400 local water supply agencies, which serve 90 percent of California residents, over the coming year. The agencies will be responsible for coming up with restrictions to cut back on water use and for monitoring compliance. State officials said the order would impose varying degrees of cutbacks on water use across the board — affecting homeowners, farms and other businesses, as well as the maintenance of cemeteries and golf courses.

“While the specifics of how this will be accomplished are being left to the water agencies, it is certain that Californians across the state will have to cut back on watering gardens and lawns — which soak up a vast amount of the water this state uses every day — as well as washing cars and even taking showers.”

Today’s article explained that, “Owners of large farms, who obtain their water from sources outside the local water agencies, will not fall under the 25 percent guideline. State officials noted that many farms had already seen a cutback in their water allocations because of the drought. In addition, the owners of large farms will be required, under the governor’s executive order, to offer detailed reports to state regulators about water use, ideally as a way to highlight incidents of water diversion or waste.

Because of this system, state officials said, they did not expect the executive order to result — at least in the immediate future — in an increase in farm or food prices.”

(more…)

Wednesday Update: Ag Economy; Policy; and, Regulations

Reminder: Only two FarmPolicy.com reports left.

Agricultural Economy

A news release yesterday from USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) stated that, “For a second year in a row, U.S. growers are raising the bar on soybean acreage. Growers across the United States intend to plant an estimated record-high 84.6 million acres of soybeans in 2015, [related graph], according to the Prospective Plantings report released today by [NASS].”

Yesterday’s release added that, “NASS today also released the quarterly Grain Stocks report to provide estimates of on-farm and off-farm stocks as of March 1. Key findings in that report include:

“- Corn stocks totaled 7.74 billion bushels, up 11 percent from the same time last year. On-farm corn stocks were up 13 percent from a year ago, and off-farm stocks were up 7 percent.

“- Soybeans stored on farms totaled 1.33 billion bushels, up 34 percent from March 1, 2014. On-farm soybean stocks were up 60 percent from a year ago, while off-farm stocks were up 18 percent.”

University of Illinois agricultural economist Darrel Good indicated yesterday at the farmdoc daily blog (“USDA Stocks and Acreage Estimates Smaller than Expected for Soybeans and Larger than Expected for Corn”) that, “Compared to pre-report expectations, the March 1 soybean stocks and 2015 planting intentions estimates represent modestly friendly surprises. On the other hand, the stocks and planting intentions estimates represented modestly negative surprises for the corn market. Part of the negative corn price response to the estimates likely reflects inflated trend yield estimates for 2015 and perhaps an incorrect interpretation of the pace of feed and residual use during the first half of the marketing year. Attention will now turn to spring weather and planting progress.”

(more…)