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27 publications, sorted by date 

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Amber Waves, March 04, 2014
Farmers planted about 170 million acres of GE crops in 2013—principally corn, cotton, and soybeans—representing about half of the U.S. farmland used to grow crops. Pest management traits are the main feature engineered into GE crops grown, but over time, traits providing protection against additiona...
ERR-163, March 03, 2014
Public risk management policies for dairy producers have the potential to induce expansion in milk supplies, which might lower farm-level prices and offset risk-reduction benefits. An evaluation of USDA’s Livestock Gross Margin-Dairy insurance program finds economic downside risk significantly redu...
FDS-13L-01, December 30, 2013
From 2005 to 2011, wheat, corn, and soybean futures contracts were affected by growing discrepancies between expiring futures prices and cash prices--a problem known as non-convergence. In response, the futures exchanges modified their contracts to better reflect market conditions. Those modificati...
EIB-115, August 05, 2013
From 2005-10, the price of expiring U.S. corn, soybean, and wheat futures contracts settled much higher than corresponding delivery market cash prices. Theories about why this unprecedented non-convergence occurred are examined along with policy options to prevent it in the future.
Amber Waves, July 01, 2013
Since USDA conservation programs are voluntary, farmers base their participation decisions on local conditions, among other factors, and those decisions are influenced by the level of local drought risk. This is a form of climate adaptation.
ERR-148, April 30, 2013
This report evaluates the extent to which farms facing higher levels of drought risk are more likely to participate in conservation programs, and finds a strong link between drought risk and program participation.
OCS-12h, August 13, 2012
ERS -- working closely with the World Agricultural Outlook Board, the Foreign Agricultural Service, and other USDA agencies -- conducts market analysis and provides short- and long-term projections of U.S. and world agricultural production, consumption, and trade
OCS-12G, July 12, 2012
ERS--working closely with the World Agricultural Outlook Board, the Foreign Agricultural Service, and other USDA agencies--conducts market analysis and provides short- and long-term projections of U.S. and world agricultural production, consumption, and trade.
EIB-91, February 06, 2012
The distribution of commodity-related payments and Federal crop insurance indemnities to U.S. farmers has shifted to larger farms as more and more U.S. agricultural production is done on those farms. Since the operators of larger farms tend to have higher household incomes than other farm operators,...
EIB-88, December 02, 2011
Innovations in farm organization, business arrangements, and production practices have allowed farmers to produce more with less. Fewer labor hours and less land are used today than 30 years ago, and practices such as the use of genetically engineered seeds and no-till have dampened increases in mac...
EIB-87, November 22, 2011
This report provides a classification of types of overlap and a synthesis of ERS research about overlapping payments in the U.S. farm safety net, including how to identify and measure overlap among crop revenue insurance, ACRE, SURE, and ad hoc disaster assistance. Future research avenues are sugges...
ERR-127, September 22, 2011
Nitrogen is an important agricultural input that is critical for crop production. However, the introduction of large amounts of nitrogen into the environment has a number of undesirable impacts on water, terrestrial, and atmospheric resources. This report explores the use of nitrogen in U.S. agricul...
ERR-120, June 30, 2011
Native grasslands in the U.S. Northern Plains, particularly those located in the Prairie Pothole Region, are excellent breeding habitat for migratory birds. The conversion of grassland to crop production could damage this habitat and affect bird populations. We focus on three questions: How fast are...
EIB-77, May 26, 2011
The Fair and Equitable Tobacco Reform Act of 2004 eliminated tobacco quotas and tobacco price supports and allowed producers to plant any amount or type of tobacco regardless of geographic location. The authors found that flue-cured tobacco producers made greater adjustments to their operations afte...
EIB-72, February 14, 2011
Marketing and production contracts covered 39 percent of the value of U.S. agricultural production in 2008, up from 36 percent in 2001, and a substantial increase over 28 percent in 1991 and 11 percent in 1969. However, aggregate contract use has stabilized in recent years and no longer suggests a s...
AIS-90, December 15, 2010
Net farm income is forecast at $81.6 billion in 2010, up 31 percent from 2009 and 26 percent higher than the 10-year average of $64.8 billion for 2000 to 2009. Net cash income at $92.5 billion would be a nominal record, 2.3 percent above the prior record attained in 2008. Net value added is expected...
EIB-70, November 02, 2010
Most U.S. farmers prepare their soil for seeding and weed and pest control through tillage—plowing operations that disturb the soil. Tillage practices affect soil carbon, water pollution, and farmers’ energy and pesticide use, and therefore data on tillage can be valuable for understanding the pract...
ERR-101, September 17, 2010
Crop revenue variability, which differs across crops and their growing regions and the geographic levels at which revenue is measured, is the focus of the Average Crop Revenue Election, an agricultural commodity program that was first available to producers in 2009. Using an empirically-based simula...
ERR-84, December 29, 2009
Authorized by the 2008 Farm Act, the Average Crop Revenue Election (ACRE) program is the first revenue-based, income-support program that calculates payments using recent market prices and a producer’s actual plantings. The payments are triggered when a farm’s revenue and State revenue (price multip...
FDS-09G-01, August 05, 2009
The past 5 years have seen large increases in trading of corn, soybean, and wheat futures contracts by nontraditional traders, a trend that coincided with historic price increases for these commodities. These events have raised questions about whether changes in the composition of traders participat...
EIB-38, June 30, 2008
Broiler production in the United States is coordinated almost entirely through systems of production contracts, in which a grower’s compensation is based, in part, on how the grower’s performance compares with that of other growers. The industry is undergoing a gradual structural change as productio...
EIB-35, April 01, 2008
More than half of all transactions for U.S. agricultural products are still conducted through spot market exchanges, in which commodities are bought and sold in open market transactions for immediate delivery. But a growing share of U.S. farm production is produced and sold under agricultural contra...
ERR-39, February 22, 2007
A model developed for this analysis improved on the USDA method of estimating counter-cyclical payment rates by accounting for the variability in market price forecast errors. This enhanced method produced unbiased estimates. Forecasters and producers can use the model to calculate the probabilities...
EIB-15, June 28, 2006
In recent U.S. farm policy debates, several “whole-farm revenue” programs have been proposed as a new form of safety net that would be available to all U.S. farms. A whole-farm program is based on revenues from all farming activities added together and is not linked to the production of particular c...
AER-837, November 01, 2004
Production and marketing contracts govern 36 percent of the value of U.S. agricultural production, up from 12 percent in 1969. Contracts are now the primary method of handling sales of many livestock commodities, including milk, hogs, and broilers, and of major crops such as sugar beets, fruit, and ...
MP-1542, May 01, 1997
The Third National IPM Symposium/Workshop took place in Washington, D.C., from February 27 through March 1, 1996. More than 600 participants from around the country attended the symposium/workshop reflecting a wide spectrum of professional interests including scientists (social, biological, and envi...
AIB-733, April 01, 1997
Small U.S. farms and those run by socially disadvantaged minority operators tend not to purchase insurance or to participate in insurance-type programs operated by USDA. This report traces the lack of use of such risk management measures to several characteristics of such farmers, who include female...

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