Home Ken's Commentaries Ken's Commentary – 8/1: Congress Will Do Something This Week

Ken's Commentary – 8/1: Congress Will Do Something This Week

Such an incredible prediction! The House of Representatives is in the hot seat to pass some type of disaster program for livestock producers before they recess and go home to a hot and dusty constituency.

Livestock producers are in a bind and their votes this fall are going to go to “the last guy who gave them money”. That makes it very difficult for even the most conservative Republicans to go home without a disaster program to mute the impact of the drought.

Crop reports are going to be released, starting today at 4:00 pm from FC Stone. Informa puts out its numbers on Friday and USDA will release the August Crop Report at 7:30 am on Friday, August 10. It appears all will indicate a small harvest, but how small is the question. We spoke with Greg Thessen, Head of the Iowa Field Office for USDA National Agricultural Statistic Service. (Audio on the site) His enumerators are in the field doing their meticulous calculations. I quoted to him reaction of Iowa Ag Secretary, Bill Northey, who said: “I can’t estimate one row this year let alone one field.” Thessen was sympathetic but assured me that their methods would transcend the variability of single rows and fields to provide an accurate estimate of the entire crop.

I’m doing some investigating of the efficiency of a combine that is sent into a field to harvest ten bushel per acre corn. Can these behemoths actually do a good job under drought condition?. Also, if they and Mother Nature, scatter the corn kernels, what does that do to planting fields to soybeans next spring and spraying glyphosate? Do you have to mix in another product to kill glyphosate resistant corn?

The unintended consequences of this drought are going to be with us for years.