In The News

Feb 16, 2024

Breaking Down 5 Projections in the USDA 2024 Corn Outlook

Key Issues: Production

Author: Krista Swanson

USDA released the Grains and Oilseeds Outlook this week providing an initial look at the 2024/25 marketing year projections that include lower production, greater domestic use, increased exports, and higher ending stocks as compared to the current 2023/24 market years. The following is a summary and some additional context for five projections from the latest outlook.   Yield Corn yield is projected at 181 bushels per acre. Yield projections depend on the modeling approach and time series used. While a 3.7 bushel per acre increase over the 2023 record 177.3 bushels per acre may seem like a stretch, a regression on annual yields from 2023 to several different historical points including 1934, 1980, and 1996 all predict 2024 yields within about one bushel of the USDA projection.   Trendline yields are a reasonable expectation at this point. Adverse weather is generally thought to have a negative impact on yields but in 2023 a record yield was achieved in a year with widespread...

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Feb 9, 2024

Climate, Conflict, & Currency Impact Cost Competitiveness for U.S. Corn Exports

Key Issues: Trade

Author: Krista Swanson

A combination of climate, conflict, and currency values are factors in cost competitiveness that impacts transits and overall U.S. corn exports.   Climate Climate conditions brought widespread drought to the United States Corn Belt in 2023. Dry conditions in the Mississippi River basin led to record low water levels. As a result, barge weight and traffic restrictions were imposed, and the 7.7 million tons of corn moved by barge on the Mississippi River in 2023 was 30% lower than 2022 and 54% lower than 2021. Ultimately, the cost of added time and weight restrictions were factors contributing to a higher corn price at port but also meant pace of getting grain to the port was slowed.   Climate-induced waterway challenges for U.S. corn don’t end at the Gulf. Extreme drought has forced substantial scaleback of shipping through the Panama Canal, a key global maritime channel. The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has reduced traffic to 24 ships a day, about two-thirds of the normal...

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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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Dec 7, 2022

NCGA Consider Corn Challenge Winner Gets Another Step Closer to Commercialization

Key Issues: New Uses

Author: Julie Busse

ExoPolymer, Inc., a winner of the Consider Corn Challenge II, recently announced a new partnership with CP Kelco, which takes ExoPolymer’s technology one step closer to commercialization. The partnership with CP Kelco will help ExoPolymer scale up production of a polysaccharide-based biopolymer. ExoPolymer is creating a new profile of customizable, polysaccharide-based hydrocolloids that are domestically produced by microbial fermentation using corn sugar as a feedstock. These new hydrocolloids will meet the growing needs and performance gaps in the healthcare, personal care, food, pharmaceutical and energy industries.   “We are thrilled to see one of our previous Consider Corn Challenge Winners, Derek Wells and ExoPolymer, continue to reach key milestones in becoming closer to commercialization,” said NCGA Director of Market Development Sarah McKay. “This is our hope for all of our winners and is the goal of the contest. We want to help bring to light some of the great research...

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Dec 5, 2022

NCGA Promotes Julie Busse to Director of Renewable Fuels

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) is pleased to announce Julie Busse has accepted the role of Director of Renewable Fuels. In her new position, Busse will serve as lead staff for the Ethanol Action Team (ETHAT) driving the organization’s ethanol related development, promotion, research, and education efforts.    For the past five years, Busse has worked in the NCGA communications department first as a manager, then sr. manager and most recently as director. She has supported the entire market development portfolio, which includes ethanol, animal agriculture and new uses. She also has served as the media relations lead for ag media, managed the organization's content calendar, led NCGA’s communications metrics reporting efforts, and more. Last year, she was recognized at Growth Energy’s Executive Leadership Conference with the TOBI award for Public Affairs for the communications campaign she launched and managed in Washington D.C.   “Throughout her career, Julie has a...

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Nov 29, 2022

Dover Fueling Solutions Announces E40 Upgrades to Wayne Ovation Fuel Dispensers

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

Dover Fueling Solutions becomes the first manufacturer to offer optional UL-certified E40 fuel dispensers as standard   Today, Dover Fueling Solutions (DFS), part of Dover Corporation and a leading global provider of advanced customer-focused technologies, services and solutions in the fuel and convenience retail industry, announced all North American Wayne Ovation Fuel Dispensers will be supplied as compatible and UL-listed to E40/B20 as a standard feature. The announcement extends DFS’ UL compliance from E25 to E40, with the continued option of up to E85 available across all models and configurations, and cements DFS as the first manufacturer of fuel dispensers to offer an E40 UL listing.   “In response to consumer demands for greater fuel efficiency and a desire to lower greenhouse gasses, DFS and Wayne’s Ovation Fuel Dispensers are proud to provide E40 UL listings,” said Scott Negley, Senior Director, Product Management at Dover Fueling Solutions. “This reflects DFS’...

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Nov 14, 2022

NCGA Announces National Search for New CEO

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association Board of Directors has hired Hedlin Ag Enterprises of Ankeny, Iowa to assist with the search for a new CEO. The initial part of the search involves identifying and vetting potential candidates for the position which will occur through the end of this year and into the beginning of 2023. Candidate interviews for the CEO position will be held in February with the intention of introducing the new CEO during Commodity Classic in March.   “We have been very thoughtful and put a lot of time and effort into this process,” said NCGA President Tom Haag. “We started with a task force who developed the qualities and characteristics we want in our next CEO and now a search committee will work with Hedlin Ag Enterprises on finding the next leader of our organization to help us meet the many challenges we face.”   The board will entertain both internal and external candidates. Anyone interested in applying for the CEO position with NCGA can email their...

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Oct 26, 2022

#ICYMI: RFD-TV Cattlemen to Cattlemen Episode Focuses on the Importance of Beef and Corn Exports

Key Issues: TradeAnimal Agriculture

Author: Julie Busse

Viewers of Cattlemen to Cattlemen on RFD-TV will get a firsthand look at the value of corn and beef exports at the Port of New Orleans. The episode will re-air on Tuesday, November 1 at 8:30 PM ET. National Corn Growers Association's (NCGA) Market Development Action Team (MDAT) funded this initiative. In 2021, beef and pork exports accounted for 537 million bushels of corn usage.   “The U.S. is the world’s leading exporter of corn and when you pair that with the success of exports of the beef industry, it is an important demand driver for corn farmers,” said National Corn Growers Association President and Minnesota farmer Tom Haag. “Being at the Port of New Orleans for this episode was a great backdrop because of the amount of agricultural goods and product that goes out of this port.”   Panel participants include Tom Haag, NCGA President and Minnesota farmer; National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) President and Minnesota farmer Don Schiefelbein; NCGA Market Development...

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Oct 19, 2022

NCGA on SPR Release: Ethanol is Key for Increasing Fuel Supply, Lowering Prices at the Pump

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Julie Busse

With the Department of Energy’s announcement to release 15 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) called on policymakers to advance ethanol as a solution to increase the nation’s fuel supply and lower prices for American consumers at the pump. NCGA also highlighted a new report that found nationwide E15 sales would save drivers over $20 billion in annual fuel costs.   “We welcome the administration’s continued focus on energy security, but we can’t lose sight of the need for long-term solutions,” NCGA Vice President of Public Policy Brooke Appleton said. “While a further SPR release may provide some short-term relief, expanding access to higher biofuel blends and advancing fuel policy solutions help extend fuel supplies, lower costs for consumers and shore-up America’s energy security for the long run.”   Ethanol adds nearly 15 billion gallons to our fuel supply every year, lowering demand for high-cost oil...

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Oct 5, 2022

Minnesota Farmer Tom Haag Takes Over as NCGA President

Author: Julie Busse

This week, National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President and Minnesota farmer Tom Haag held a news conference with the media to outline his goals for his year as president.   Haag told reporters, “This year is already shaping up to be a big one for America’s corn farmers. There’s the next farm bill, the Next Generation Fuels Act, and that’s barely scratching the surface.”   Haag acknowledged that there’s a lot of work to tackle in the year ahead. “I am focused on going all in for corn farmers and I can’t do it alone. It will take all of us to ensure our voice is heard in Washington D.C., while also increasing demand for our product. It’s hard to know what other issues could come our way, but I am ready to tackle them together.”   Haag answered questions from the media, which focused on the farm bill, ethanol, the Mexican ban on GM corn, and crop progress on his farm.   You can learn more about Tom by reading his bio here or watching this brief introduction video Read More

For media inquiries contact Bryan Goodman, goodman@ncga.com