China Effect on Spring Planting
Weather factors and supply-demand issues are fundamental market-drivers, and accepted as typical stressors by farmers. But when politics dominate market fundamentals the result is even higher levels of stress.
Political issues involving China have caused those tensions for farmers to spiral in many cases.
Al Mussel, with Canadian Agri-food Analytics Systems says many farmers are re-thinking their planted acreage this spring, due to the trade uncertainty with China.
"If you have prolonged trade disruptions between the US and China in soybeans, the land-base will shift from soybeans into growing corn. One of the worries, probably from a Canadian perspective is, we're going to have low canola prices with the loss of this market access, the US acreage shift sharply into corn, then you're going to have low corn prices in Canada. And so goes corn, so goes wheat, typically. So, you have this remarkable situation, very low crop prices, and very high livestock and meat prices. I think its unprecedented."
2019 is shaping up to be a wild ride for just about all farming sectors on both sides of the Canada-US border.
"Any one of the various issues that we're dealing with right now probably would be regarded as a crisis, in its own right. But we're dealing with a multiple of them now. Its, frankly, so big its hard for people to get their head around."
And as we are seeing - the trade war has become a far reaching issue.