Swine fever outbreak in China complicates soybean trade with U.S.

Tensions in the oilseed market over the United States-China trade war eased a little last week on word that a Chinese trade negotiating delegation would visit the U.S. this month and reports that cargoes of soybeans delayed off China’s shore were finally being unloaded in port. But important questions remain: Will China and the Trump […] Read more

Wheat crops are suffering in northern Europe, Australia and Canada.  |  File photo

Global wheat crop shrinks for first time in five years

The hot, dry weather slashing production prospects in much of northern Europe has helped the Minneapolis hard red wheat price to recover back to levels it traded at for much of the last crop year. However, to climb much higher would require help from a rally in other grains, and at least for now, that […] Read more

The U.S.-China trade war and suffering crops in other parts of the world are creating export opportunities for Canada, but the railways must step up and ensure they can deliver when needed.  |  File photo

Railways must perform if Canada is to capture exports

With crops in Europe, the Black Sea region and Australia suffering from moisture stress this summer, there could be an enhanced export opportunity for North American crops this crop year. And with America’s export outlook darkened by the Trump administration’s bellicose attitude toward most of its trading partners, Canada has the potential to be a […] Read more


A woman wears a Make America Great Again cap as U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a rally in Great Falls, Montana, July 5. Trump’s hard line on trade has sparked retaliatory actions from many of the United States’ trading partners.  |  REUTERS/Joshua Roberts photo

U.S. tariff war could spark dangerous consequences

The much-threatened tariff lists are being implemented and I fear we don’t know how wide the impacts will be. American President Donald Trump’s hard, unreasonable line on trade has sparked retaliatory actions from Canada, China, Mexico and the European Union. A study by Adam Slater, an Oxford University economist, says that if all the tariff […] Read more

New gene editing methods, coupled with other technologies such as quantum computing and artificial intelligence, mean the pace of innovation could quicken to the point that it will become virtually impossible for regulation to keep up.  |  File photo

New technology will force rethink on GM regulations

The case of the unapproved genetically modified wheat plants showing up alongside an oil well access road in Alberta is baffling on many levels, but the reality of Japan halting Canadian wheat imports could not be more clear. It is also clear that the rapid advance of genetic science will make obsolete the legal frameworks […] Read more


Oilseed price decline stabilizes but uncertainty reigns

While the United States-China tariff war has cast a pall over the oilseed market, it looks like we are not facing a bottomless pit in the soybean market. And the canola market last week was doing better than holding its own, with the November contract showing a modest rally, supported by the falling Canadian dollar. […] Read more

The spring high in new crop November soybeans was reached May 25 and the price has since fallen by almost 12 percent.  |  File photo

China-U.S. trade war gets real as soybean tariffs imposed

A growing trade war between the United States and China is weighing heavily on American soybean prices, which have fallen sharply from the spring highs. However, the value of Canadian canola is hanging on better. The weather in the U.S. Midwest is co-operating and the amount of soybeans in good to excellent shape at 74 […] Read more

Trump is learning that the ethanol industry, which generates US$45 billion in economic activity annually, mostly in Midwestern farm states, can’t be treated in a cavalier fashion. | File photo

Trump learns not to mess with biofuel policy

Current U.S. president and former New York real estate developer Donald Trump might might not have fully realized the power of ethanol in the politics of America’s heartland. But he is learning now that the ethanol industry, which generates US$45 billion in economic activity annually, mostly in Midwestern farm states, can’t be treated in a […] Read more


A new higher protein canola meal will make what was the IP Nexera canola an even more valuable product for feed makers, creating greater competition for soybean meal.  |  File photo

Canola meal: from byproduct to valuable co-product

A new type of canola with a meal similar to soybean meal promises a major breakthrough into the vast livestock feed market. Researchers are also working hard on other aspects of the meal to capture fast-growing opportunities in the human food market, which is hot for protein. After years of development and testing DowDuPont plans […] Read more

Stars align to support crop prices

Crop futures prices often rally in the spring and early summer because traders set prices to account for a weather risk premium and this year is no different. Indeed, prices for nearby futures in wheat, canola and corn are at or near the top of the common range of price in the last two or […] Read more