Food and Beverage Agriculture

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  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • corn_field_dry_200.jpg

    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.

  • 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."

  • ethanol_corn_gas_can_200.jpg

    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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • corn_field_dry_200.jpg

    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.

  • 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.

  • For answers, Jim Cramer looks at the technicals.

  • Marijuana

    Marijuana in California is seemingly coming full circle. It gone from being a banned substance to legal under state law for medical uses to being banned again in many cities. Now it turns out that pot is also bad for the animals.

  • Corn plants struggle to survive in a drought-stricken farm field near Oakton, Indiana.

    The U.S. corn crop continues to shrink, and that is likely to add upward pressure to prices, which hit a record Monday.

  • Weather Impact on Grains

    Christopher Narayanan, Head of Agricultural Commodities Research, Societe Generale says that there's no need for an ethanol mandate waiver as there is still sufficient inventories.