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  • Brewing storm: 2015 net farm income could be lower than 1990s

  • Alan Guebert’s new book binds us to land of milk and Uncle Honey

  • Punching Russia’s breadbasket

Farm and Food File Results

A golden goose for chicken feed

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Every week for 19 years this 170 square-foot, two-dog, one-person office has declared its complete devotion to numbers. For example, just last week we found it completely fascinating that in just three days this month 100 U.S. senators offered 302 amendments to an ag committee-approved 2012 farm bill that already ran more than 1,000 pages. […]

Bigger programs, bigger boondoggles

Thursday, June 21, 2012

In mid-June, the best guessers on Capitol Hill handicapped a probable 2012 Farm bill this way: either the Senate passes its version by the Fourth of July to push the House to act by late summer or no farm law will pass until after the November general election. That either-or view takes in a lot […]

Some hot numbers in cold times

Thursday, June 14, 2012

As the world stumbles toward a summer of financial winter, one part of the American economy continues its merry, five-year waltz: U.S. ag exports are forecast to reach $134.5 billion in Fiscal Year 2012. Estimate That estimate, released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture May 31, is $3.5 billion higher than USDA’s February guess and […]

Go ahead and bet against Europe

Thursday, June 7, 2012

When I hopped on the ag journalism jet in 1981, the European Union (known then as the European Economic Union) forecast it would spend a fabulous sum — $5 billion or so — on its farm support program, the Common Agricultural Policy. By comparison, the USDA estimated total 1981 farm program costs here would be […]

Take a guess how this is going to end

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Since you speak English as well as anyone, perhaps you understand the working paragraph of a May 19 Washington Post column that explains the trading strategy employed by JP Morgan Chase & Co. to, ah, hedge its market risk. It reads: “It is this exemption that would allow (J.P. Morgan executive, Ina) Drew and her […]

Big numbers should trigger hard questions

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Hard numbers, hard questions and even harder answers.

The wisdom of hard work on the farm: ‘It won’t kill you’

Thursday, May 17, 2012

It is the universal German Lutheran explanation for all the unnecessary sweat generated by farm folks since the Garden of Eden, “Besides, it doesn’t kill us.”

Sugar water or Kool-Aid?

Friday, May 11, 2012

Alan Guebert reacts to the recently passed Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012.

USDA’s unused case to push own rule

Thursday, May 3, 2012

In a striking, two-and-a-half page analysis that ran counter to department leanings, the chief economist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture strongly objected to the department’s use of two outside studies that justified the massive retooling — essentially gutting — of the 2010 update of Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) rules to ensure […]

The best ag economist I ‘never’ met

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Before I was lucky enough to keep myself in suds and my family in socks with this weekly effort, my previous boss liked to remind me that I had “the best job in ag journalism.” He was right because I spent most of my time and his money writing profiles of the political and intellectual […]


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