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Elevator group questions grain rail reporting process

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By Brian Cross Saskatoon newsroom There are ongoing problems with the way railway performance is reported and monitored says the organization representing Western Canada’s largest grain handling companies. Wade Sobkowich, executive director with the Western Grain Elevators Association, says WGEA members, which include Viterra, Cargill and Richardson, still don’t understand fully the methods Canada’s major railways companies use to report weekly grain movement. Sobkowich said grain companies have no opportunity to view or scrutinize the weekly grain shipment reports that the railways prepare and submit to government. Federal bureaucrats use the reports to determine…
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Harvest pressure pushes crop futures lower

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By D'Arce McMillan Saskatoon newsroom Canola and other crop futures fell on Thursday largely on harvest pressure. American farmers are harvesting record yields and do not have the storage space to keep it all on farm so there will likely be heavy deliveries during harvest. There is also some off-the-combine delivery in Western Canada, generating commercial hedges. Another factor in the market is the strength of the U.S. dollar against many world currencies. As the buck rises, it makes its grain more expensive for global grain buyers. The U.S. greenback hit a six-year high versus Japan’s yen today. The dollar index, a gauge of its value against six currencies, climbed to…
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Latest Sask. crop report

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SOUTH Good weather conditions have allowed many producers to harvest. However,  many operations were still at a standstill. Thirty-one percent of the crop is combined and 35 percent is swathed or ready to straight cut. Average yields are being reported, but quality remains an issue because of sprouting, bleaching and disease damage. Small amounts of rain fell in most of the region. Areas such as Moose Jaw reported 21 millimetres. The Cadillac area has received 583 mm since April 1. Topsoil moisture conditions on cropland are adequate. Hayland and pasture moisture is adequate, but many areas are wet and equipment is getting stuck. Localized flooding, hail,…
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Weak cash price outlook drops CME live cattle futures; hogs down

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By Theopolis Waters CHICAGO, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle settled lower on Thursday in anticipation of packers spending less for market-ready, or cash, cattle this week, traders said. October live cattle futures finished 1.425 cents per pound lower at 155.600 cents, and December at 158.925 cents down 1.075 cents. Processors may cut slaughters, and resist raising bids for cattle, to recoup lost margins and improve wholesale beef prices, traders and analysts said. A beef processing plant may be offline on Friday for scheduled repairs, which should reduce their need for supplies, they said. Thursday morning's choice wholesale beef price fell 76…
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Injured boy to recover

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RCMP responded to a call on Tuesday of a six-year-old boy shot on his parents' farm. The rural property is located near Beiseker, Alta.. RCMP did not release the cause of the shooting, but it is believed the boy was accidentally shot with a small calibre firearm on the farm. The boy was being driven on the QEII Highway when Calgary EMS took the call. Paramedics met the car near Airdrie and transferred the injured boy into their care. Although unconventional, the procedure to retrieve the boy worked. Stuart Brideaux from EMS says it wasn't an ideal situation to work with. "This could be a choice we'd rather not see if we can get to you quicker. But given the rural environment,…
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Latest Manitoba crop report

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SOUTHWEST Isolated rain showers and severe thunderstorms plagued parts of the southwest and north of Highway 45. Minor frost also occurred. Pastures improved with recent rains, but frost and cool temperatures are limiting the expected growth. Dugouts remain at capacity. Limited harvest progress was made. Pea yields are average with some fields below average due to early season root rot. Winter yields range from 45 to 65 bushels per acre with moderate fusarium levels. Spring wheat yields are 55 to 65 bu. per acre with low fusarium levels. Early canola yields range 40 to 50 bu. per acre. Producers are swathing late canola fields to minimize damage from potential…
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U.S. launches task force to tackle antibiotic-resistant bugs

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CHICAGO (Reuters) — The U.S. government will set up a task force and presidential advisory council to tackle the growing threat of antibiotic resistance to national security, setting a Feb. 15 deadline for the outlining of specific steps to be taken, White House advisers said at a press conference on Thursday. The White House announced the moves in an executive order charging the secretaries of defence, agriculture and health and human services to establish the task force, which will advise on steps to preserve the effectiveness of the remaining medically important antibiotics available to treat humans. "This has been a problem that has been brewing for decades," Eric Lander,…
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CHS buys into Aussie grain company

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The largest farmer-owned grain co-operative in the United States is expanding its footprint in Australia. CHS Inc., based at St. Paul, Minnesota, announced today that it has acquired a 50 percent share of Broadbent Grain, a grain handling  and supply chain management company with grain collection facilities in Queensland and Victoria, Australia. "Investing in Broadbent Grain will further expand CHS grain origination capabilities in Australia by adding grain storage, handling and logistical expertise, especially as it relates to delivering wheat via shipping containers to customers across the Asia-Pacific region," said Jon Bucknall, general manager for CHS Australia. Broadbent…
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CP Rail meeting Canada grain shipment targets

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(Reuters) — Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. has met the minimum weekly grain volumes mandated by the Canadian government, the railway said on Thursday, a day after Transport Canada said it would fine Canadian National Railway Co. for falling short. Canadian Pacific spokeswoman Breanne Feigel said in an email that the railway had cleared the minimum volumes to date and a spokeswoman with the transport department also said the railroad had met the requirements. After last year's record wheat and canola harvest and transportation bottlenecks, the Canadian government ordered the two railways in March to each move 500,000 tonnes of grain per week. Last month, the government boosted the…
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Ottawa fines CN over grain shipments; company cries foul

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A decision by Ottawa to impose fines against Canada's largest railway company for failing to move more than 5,000 rail cars of grain a week are unfounded, according to officials from Canadian National Railway. That's because there is no longer enough grain in the commercial handling system to fill that many cars. "Any government penalties against CN in connection with its transportation of western Canadian grain would be unfounded, given that it's the current balance of the grain supply chain that has not allowed us to meet the government's order-In-council minimum grain volume requirement," CN said in a Sept. 17 statement. "CN's weekly demand has been less than 5,000 cars per week…
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