In The News

Dec 1, 2023

Drought & River Transport Impact on Corn Competitiveness

Key Issues: TradeTransportation and Infrastructure

Author: Krista Swanson

For the second year in a row, drought conditions are impacting transportation on the Mississippi River at the peak shipment point of the year. Shallower river levels mean barge weight restrictions, slower barge traffic, and higher costs to ship commodities on the river. Ultimately, this translates to a relatively lower price at the farmgate and higher cost for the world buyer.   Drought Slows Grain Barge Traffic in 2022 and 2023 The Mississippi River is an important channel for commodity transportation. The USDA reports the final mode of transport was barge for 13% of U.S. grains in 2020, and 46% of exported U.S. grains[i]. There are normally two peaks in grain barge movements, one in late summer leading up to the end of the marketing year for corn and soybeans, and the other emerging in the fall harvest season and into the post-harvest months.   The impact of low water levels on grain barge movements was notable in 2023, marking the second consecutive year of drought...

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Oct 27, 2020

Working Together to Build Demand

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Geoff Cooper, RFA

This is a guest editorial, provided to NCGA by Geoff Cooper - President and CEO, Renewable Fuels Association.   At the Renewable Fuels Association, our “reason for being” is really quite simple: Build new markets and grow demand. In fact, RFA’s mission statement is crystal clear on this point: Drive expanded demand for American-made renewable fuels and bioproducts worldwide.   We know this cannot be accomplished alone. We realize building demand for ethanol and its coproducts is important not just for RFA’s ethanol producer members, but also for those who supply them—our nation’s corn farmers. For this reason, we are extremely grateful for our strong and long-standing relationship with NCGA and our ability to collaborate on important demand creation programs.   The recent collaboration on the USDA’s Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program is one of the best examples of our work together. With support from the corn growers, RFA was able to assist three dozen retailer...

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