- Niu Shuping and David Stanway of Reuters report on AgWeek.com that China has still not approved the GMO corn variety that has led to the rejection of nearly a million metric tons of U.S. corn by Chinese port officials. The biosafety panel responsible for approving GMO imports met at the end of March but did not reach a decision on corn issue. The panel is not scheduled to meet again until June, making the approval process unlikely before the second half of the year.
- Bloomberg reports that despite a corn supply glut in China, Chinese farmers are planning for large corn acreage this season because they know they’ll receive support from government payments as the nation continues to stockpile the grain. Climbing meat consumption and the need for animal feed also provides strong demand incentive for continued high corn acreage.
- AgriMoney.com reports that USDA’s Projected Plantings report may be selling short the 2014 U.S. corn crop. Many of the acres switching out of corn are in areas not as well suited for growing the grain and wouldn’t have as much of an impact on total production. Additionally, USDA has traditionally been known to underestimate corn plantings, with 7 of the last 10 years containing initial reports that fell well short of actual planted acres. At the same time, USDA is also known to overestimate soybean plantings, while many acres switching to beans are also less than ideally suited for the crop.
On the Lighter Side
- Emily Nelson reports for Indiana Public Media that a group of Purdue students have developed a new soybean-based material for use in 3D printing. With 3D printers becoming more popular the group felt that a renewable resource material was needed to replace the petroleum-based plastics currently used in 3D printing. For their development efforts, the team won the Purdue University Student Soybean Product Innovation Contest, and will have their product, along with those from the other entrants in the contests, tested for commercial viability.