Category Archives: soybeans

Financial Times Features Global Grain Surplus Story Plus Video

The Financial Times and commodities writer Gregory Meyer are known for their quality articles. They’ve covered the U.S. and global surplus of grain story in an article including a video (below).

Story here: Commodities: Cereal excess By Gregory Meyer. “Global grain supplies are soaring, which will cause an eventual slowing of food price inflation”

Two Superweed Choices are Dismal

One positive claim that has been touted loudly from the industrial monoculture crop fields over this past decade, or so, has been the more widely adopted no-till farming method. However, the no-till method goes hand-in-hand with herbicides. Only with liberal use of herbicides is tilling unnecessary.

With the emergence of super weeds, however, farmers are getting back to deep tillage as a method of weed removal. That means more soil erosion. Might a return to deep tillage also mean a return to seeds which could care less about their relationship to glyphosate?

Another approach or solution, is for the “emergence” of a new herbicide tolerant crop that would be resistant to both a choline salt of 2,4-D and glyphosate, called Enlist Duo from Dow.

As the USDA is considering the deregulation of corn and soybeans that will not be affected when sprayed with Enlist Duo, fifty Democratic members of Congress are speaking out against EPA and USDA approval of this new herbicide and its related genetically engineered crops.

Corn, Soybeans, Wheat, and Cotton Prices Down 4 to 19 Percent in 2014/15

Though constantly in flux, the USDA’s projections for the four largest commodities are all trending down this year. As a consequence, farmland prices and machinery sales are also impacted.

Some expect that this year’s corn crop may reach 14.5 billion bushels and yield around 173 bushels an acre. Last year, we had a record corn crop with 13.9 billion bushels.

The expected soybean crop in the U.S. is for 3.8 billion bushels with a yield of 46 bushels an acre. The previous soybean record was 3.4 billion bushels in 2009.

In addition, China, a largest consumer of DDG product, has stopped buying DDG which may contain GM traits they have not approved, causing a huge recent price drop in this niche corn export market product.

The oversupply and lower prices of corn and soybeans also makes it very doubtful that biofuels mandates (and subsidies) will be reduced by the EPA, since lobbyists have a strong foothold around those regions of D.C.

From the USDA…

Current USDA forecasts show declines in U.S. average farm prices for major U.S. field crops—corn, soybeans, wheat, and cotton—of 4 to 19 percent in 2014/15. For corn, soybeans, and wheat, this would be the second consecutive year of declining prices. Soybean prices are forecast to decline the most in 2014/15, based on an expected record U.S. crop, combined with ample supplies from Brazil and Argentina.

U.S. corn prices are forecast to fall 10 percent in 2014/15, after a 35-percent decline in 2013/14, also based on a large U.S. corn crop forecast and competition from other exporters like Brazil, Argentina, and Ukraine. U.S. wheat prices are forecast to decline about 4 percent in 2014/15, despite the forecast for smaller U.S. supplies, due to adequate supplies from both traditional and Black Sea wheat exporters.

Although smaller cotton crops are forecast for China and India—the top two global producers—a larger U.S. crop is expected to lead to a fifth consecutive year of rising global cotton stocks and a 12-percent drop in U.S. prices in 2014/15.

source: USDA

Make Your Own Soy Milk or Almond Milk. It’s Easy!

It is a real treat in this modern day and age to actually be invited over to a neighbor’s house for dinner, and we were lucky to find ourselves in that position recently.

Somehow, late in the meal along with the strawberries atop the Ben and Jerry’s ice cream, the discussion revealed that our neighbor makes his own soy milk. He was really enthusiastic about it, bringing out his machine to show us (similar to the one in the video below) and also bringing out his bag of organic soybeans which he orders online from a farmer-supplier in Iowa. He said that it costs him about 50 cents worth of organic soybeans to make one batch, which is a great savings over store-bought soy milk.

Who knew there was so much hope in the world only a block away from my house?

Just in case this topic is as unfamiliar to you as it was to me, I’m posting two videos to demonstrate how easy it is to get started making your own soy milk, or almond milk.

In the video below, P. Allen Smith shows us how to make soy milk, both the old way – on the cookstove, and then he also shows how to make it by using a soy milk machine.

Then, in this next video, Dani Spies demonstrates how to make almond milk, which looks even easier than making soy milk.

If you snoop around Youtube and the internet, you can also find how-to videos on making oat milk, hemp milk, coconut milk, rice milk, and other plant based milks.

These milks are touted by all who would like to see humans transition to more plant based diets, plus they give you control over the taste, amount of sugar, and additives as compared to commercial products.

Personally, I like the idea because it counts as home cooking which means less packaging and less embedded fossil fuels – which are necessary for refrigerated milk distribution.

Perhaps it’s time to have your neighbors over for a dinner party so you can share your innovations in cooking with each other.

Bon Appetit!