Happy New Year! What Lies Ahead?

As expected, over the holiday’s there was minimal movement in the cash market. Prices are largely reported to be sideways since mid-December but that may begin to shift as we proceed into the New Year. There is already growing chatter concerning the strong bean and corn prices which may drag on 2021 U.S. rice acres unless the rice market begins to develop some momentum in the near future. Some believe that momentum will be influenced by the rice crop conditions in Mercosur where extremely dry conditions are going to cause a significant reduction in the harvest in these four countries’ exports.

Rice farmers in Southwest Louisiana are making spring planting decisions as they clean out the bins from the 2020 crop. Paddy rice is basically out of first hands as in the case of the South Louisiana Rail Facility’s membership who has had another successful export season, coordinating market development efforts with the US Rice Producers Association. This week farmers truck rice into the Port of Lake Charles for shipment to Veracruz, Mexico later this month as shown above.

Export demand for long-grain is down 4% year to date, which is mainly the result of milled rice demand being down 10.5% YTD. In terms of paddy, gross sales are on par with last year, but shipments are ahead of schedule. Although the US Dollar has not lost much value against the Thai Baht, it has against other currencies. Based on the ICE futures US Dollar Index, the currency weakened by more than 5% since October against major global currencies. Should the US Dollar decline further, there may be additional exporting opportunities in Latin America, however, to gain increased market share in the Middle East and Asia, the Dollar will have to lose value against key Asian exporting origins such as Thailand, India, Myanmar.

Next week the USDA will be releasing another World Agriculture Supply & Demand report as well as their Crop Production Annual Summary report which publishes the actual area planted, harvested, and the yields by rice type and state. The industry uses that data, in addition, to carry in and imports to establish a definitive beginning supply figure. From that point, the export shipments and domestic millings can be deducted in order to determine the state of supply for US long-grain at any given point throughout the marketing year.

Asian prices have shown some signs of improvement over the past few weeks, as nearly all Asian origins have posted gains since early December. While appreciation is minimal, it is nonetheless present and may be indicative of what’s to come in the weeks ahead.

Futures continue to be relatively stagnant; the nearby contract softened some in late December but is now back to $12.45 per cwt and is accompanied by relatively favorable open interest levels but with a lower trading volume.

Texas Rice Update

By: Dr. M.O. Way, Prof. of EntomologyTexas AgriLife Research and Extension Center

Well, I want to wish all my rice friends and colleagues a Happy 2021…may it be much better than 2020!

Kevin Haack

For this brief article, I want to recognize Kevin Haack who recently retired as Coordinator for Pesticide Product Evaluation and Registration with the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA). Kevin has been in this important position for the past 5 years but has served the State of Texas for 30 years. While Coordinator, Kevin worked with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), agri-chemical companies, farmers, crop consultants, and university researchers to bring onboard new and better pest management tools for the Texas rice industry. The thing I like about Kevin is he is very responsive to the needs of our farmers. Frequently, I have provided data and input to Kevin who then puts together all the facts/data and submits complicated requests to USEPA in a very timely manner. Kevin has been instrumental in gaining a Section 18 for Endigo ZC for rice planthopper control; and 3, 24c registrations for aerial applications of Command 3ME. In addition, Kevin has worked on many Special Local Needs and Section 18 registrations involving cotton, sorghum, citrus, onion, corn, grapes, cabbage, peppers, sweet potatoes, collard, kale, mustard, turnip greens, potatoes, greenhouse tomatoes, peanuts, spinach, pecans, public health pests, ticks, crazy ants and weeds in reservoirs and waterways! Kevin has always been super prompt, very efficient, and dedicated to helping Texas agriculture produce more and safer food while protecting the environment. I don’t know how TDA will replace an employee of Kevin’s caliber, expertise, and diligence…

Some more background info on Kevin: 1) before working at TDA for 17 years, Kevin was in charge of the Pest Management Program at Lamar University in Beaumont; 2) Kevin earned a BS degree in Agronomy from the University of Wisconsin and an MS degree in Entomology from Texas A&M University; 3) Kevin currently lives in Pflugerville, TX with his wife of 25 years and son; 4) during retirement, Kevin and family plan to travel and when home, Kevin will concentrate on his passion…woodworking.
To sum up, on behalf of the Texas rice industry, I wish Kevin a well-earned retirement!!! Please come by the Beaumont Center and/or my home at any time, Kevin. My cell is 409-239-4265. 

USRPA Maintains Relationships in China

USRPA continues to ship a variety of rice samples to Chinese customers in an effort to maintain our long-standing relationship with the market. The company that recently received samples along with USRPA branded gifts posted the rice on social media, thanking USRPA for support.  

Volume 17, Issue 50

December 18, 2020

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Volume 17, Issue 49

December 11, 2020

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Volume 17, Issue 48

December 4, 2020

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