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Food and Beverage Agriculture


  • Migrant workers weed lettuce seed plants at an organic produce farm near Fresno, California.

    There's a different sort of drought plaguing California, the nation's largest farm state. It's $38 billion agricultural sector is facing a scarcity of labor.

  • Can Emerging Market Consumers Keep Spending? Saturday, 18 Aug 2012 | 12:12 AM ET
    Residents shop for local goods at one of the downtown's busy sidewalk markets in Jakarta, Indonesia.

    Greater spending from the burgeoning emerging market middle class is one of those themes global and emerging market investors have clung to as developed market consumers and governments deleverage. But there’s a growing risk emerging market consumers could start pulling back as industrial commodity prices fall and higher food prices lighten consumers’ wallets.

  • Drought Impact 'Big,' Scrap Biofuel Mandates: Sunny D CEO Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 4:52 PM ET
    Crop Failure due to Drought

    The extreme heat wilting crop harvests across the U.S. is exerting a “big” toll on input prices, the chief executive of Sunny Delight told CNBC Wednesday, issuing a call for the government to suspend mandates that divert corn into biofuels.

  • Making Farming Sexy Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 4:12 PM ET
    Cattle try to keep cool in the remains of a farm pond in a pasture heavily damaged by drought August 3, 2012 near Cuba, Illinois. Farmers in the Midwest and elsewhere continue to struggle after than half the counties in the United States have been designated disaster areas, mostly due to drought conditions throughout the Midwest.

    Is agriculture feeling a little down on the farm? End of the world coming with this drought? Clearly the gloom and doomers haven't met the Peterson Farm Brothers.

  • Who’s Benefiting From the Drought? Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 1:29 PM ET
    Jeremy Tilton fills a water tank for cattle in a pasture August 3, 2012 near Cuba, Illinois.

    While wreaking havoc on grain crops, the worst U.S. drought in a half century is providing opportunities for companies that provide and pump the most precious of commodities — water. While the drought is testing farmers and food producers, the volatility in weather patterns is giving water companies new revenue sources, as they provide solutions to the environmental challenges.

  • Sen. Johanns: The Resiliency to Feed the World Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 1:06 PM ET
    Crop Failure due to Drought

    Action in Washington, combined with the ongoing efforts by our agricultural experts to mitigate the effects of this drought will ensure that agriculture remains a strong pillar of the U.S. economy that provides good jobs and feeds the world.

  • So Far So Good on Drought’s Impact: Annie’s CEO Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 12:26 PM ET
    Annies Mac and Cheese

    A drought that has ravaged U.S. crops and sent key commodity prices surging has yet to take a toll on Annie’s pricing or its bottom line, the CEO told CNBC in an interview Wednesday.

  • Ag. Secretary: We Promise to Help Drought-Stricken Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 10:01 AM ET
    Marion Kujawa looks over an ear of corn picked from one of his fields on July 16, 2012 near Ashley, Illinois. The field from which the corn was picked has yielded more than 180 bushels of corn per acre in past years, Kujawa expects to get less than 15 bushels per acre from this year’s drought-damaged crop.

    As drought continues to affect most of the country, our thoughts and prayers are with the thousands of farm families who have been affected by this disaster. Today, USDA’s focus remains on doing all we can to support farm and ranch families in an uncertain time.

  • Sen. Moran: Kansas Farmers Await  Washington Action Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 9:50 AM ET
    Westfahl Family

    Back home in Kansas we are spending our time looking up to the sky, praying and hoping for rain. Our state, along with much of the country, is suffering from a very serious drought. Crops are dying, cattle are hungry and being sold off, and water is in scarce supply.

  • Gov. Quinn: This Drought Makes Us All ‘Tom Joad’ Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 8:49 AM ET

    In Illinois, we’ve experienced the sixth-driest growing season on record. Of 102 counties, 100 are disaster areas, the state's governor addresses the issue of what's been done and what still needs to happen to help his state.

  • Sen. Pat Roberts: Don't Play Politics With Our Food Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 8:47 AM ET
    Corn plants dry in a drought-stricken farm field on July 17, 2012 near Fritchton, Indiana. The corn and soybean belt in the middle of the nation is experiencing one of the worst droughts in more than five decades.

    The Senator from Kansas writes, "We need to approve this drought assistance to ensure livestock producers can continue providing us with the most affordable and safe food supply in the world."

  • Cyr: Drought, Ethanol Mandate Equals a Big Problem Wednesday, 15 Aug 2012 | 8:38 AM ET

    As a result of a Congressional mandate passed in 2005 and expanded in 2007, over 40 percent of this year’s greatly depleted corn crop will be diverted from food and livestock, and instead be sold at the gas pump. We are trading our precious, fertile acres of farmland for a small dent in our oil usage. We are prioritizing our goal to reduce oil dependence over providing food to people.

  • Can Drought-Tolerant Seeds Save the Crop? Tuesday, 14 Aug 2012 | 3:06 PM ET
    A rotting ear of corn sits on a struggling corn plant in a drought-stricken farm field.

    The drought has been awful for farmers, but it could reap a bumper crop of good news for the seed business. With much of this year's corn harvest expected to be a disaster, analysts expect farmers to double down on seed purchases next year to get back on their feet.

  • US Drought Could Have Silver Lining: Fund Manager Tuesday, 14 Aug 2012 | 7:17 AM ET
    An underdeveloped ear of corn lays amongst corn plants damaged by extreme heat and drought conditions in a field in Carmi, Illinois.

    As the U.S. drought continues and global grain prices soar, G20 leaders are considering an emergency meeting at the end of August to consider what measures to take to combat the growing food crisis.  But the surge in corn, soy and wheat prices could also lead to some benefits for the agricultural sector and an opportunity for investors, according to one fund manager.

  • G20 Plans Response to Rising Food Prices Sunday, 12 Aug 2012 | 7:02 PM ET
    A rotting ear of corn sits on a struggling corn plant in a drought-stricken farm field.

    G20 countries are to step in to try and co-ordinate a response to surging food prices, after the worst U.S. drought in half a century devastated crops in the world’s largest agricultural exporter, the Financial Times reports.

  • Massive US Drought Leads to Worst Fears for Corn Crop Friday, 10 Aug 2012 | 11:36 AM ET
    An underdeveloped ear of corn lays amongst corn plants damaged by extreme heat and drought conditions in a field in Carmi, Illinois.

    The worst fears for the U.S. corn crop are being realized, as the government now expects the lowest yield in 17 years and a total crop about a third smaller than what was projected at the start of the growing season.

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    The recent dry weather affecting crops across the midwest of America will hit the reinsurance industry with perhaps the biggest loss ever, according to Nikolaus von Bomhard, Chairman at Munich Re.

  • mining_iron_ore_2_200.jpg

    Australia’s big iron-ore ports are currently ramping up expansion plans as the country continues to face surging demand for its natural resources.

  • Spike in Crop Prices May Signal 'Chronic Food Crisis' Thursday, 2 Aug 2012 | 12:48 PM ET
    TIANLIN, CHINA - MAY 12: A villager looks at the parched paddy on May 12, 2012 in Tianlin county, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region of China. A lingering drought has dried up most of rivers as high temperature and little rainfall over the past three months this year. Tianlin county had suffered from severe drought over the past three years.

    The spike in crop prices this year may be an early glimpse into a chronic food crisis that could unfold over the next forty years, says well-known money manager Jeremy Grantham.

  • How High Could Corn, Soybean Prices Go? Tuesday, 31 Jul 2012 | 6:53 PM ET

    For answers, Jim Cramer looks at the technicals.