AG/FDA Blog

Did You Know

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block. Finally – my corn and soybeans are in the ground.  However, as of last Sunday there were 15.8 million U.S. corn acres still unplanted.  The wet spring and ticking time clock have pushed farmers to plant fi… Read More
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Categories: USDA

Tariffs

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block. We all have priorities.  I was delighted when USMCA — our new trade agreement with Mexico and Canada — was completed and agreed to.  The next step is to get all three countries to vote acceptance… Read More
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Categories: USDA

Anxiety in Farm Country

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block. I was on the farm last week.  We did get some corn planted but then the rain came again.  Last year at this time we had all our corn and soybeans planted.  The later we are in getting the seed in the ground… Read More
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Categories: USDA

U.S. Trade Representative Announces Increased Chinese Tariffs, Promises to Provide Exclusion Process

On Wednesday, May 8th, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced plans to increase tariffs to 25 percent on approximately $200 billion worth of goods imported from China. These goods are already subject to an additional 10 percent tariff pursuan… Read More
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Categories: USTR

Spring 2019

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block. Last Sunday former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar died.  He served 36 years in the U.S. Senate – what an outstanding leader and great guy.  In 1985 we had to write and pass a new farm bill.  As Secretary of A… Read More
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Categories: USDA

What’s Ahead

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block. This weekend I will be on my farm in Illinois.  When I booked my flight, I thought we might be planting corn.  Not likely – too much rain. At this moment I am looking at the latest U.S. Dept of Agriculture… Read More
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Categories: USDA

U.S. Trade Representative Requests Comments on Potential E.U. Tariffs

On Friday, April 12, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) initiated an investigation to enforce the United States’ rights resulting from the World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute that the US filed against the European Union (EU) challenging EU sub… Read More
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Categories: USTR

Swine Fever & USMCA

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block. What should we focus on today?  Let’s start with African Swine Fever.  ASF is the deadliest disease threatening the pork industry.  It is estimated that China has lost as much as 30% of their swine.  We… Read More
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China & N. Korea

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block. Priority government issues of the day would have to be trade negotiations with China and President Trump’s meeting with N. Korea leader Kim Jong-un. Our Ag industry has been hurt because China stopped buying… Read More
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Categories: USDA

Optimism

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block Optimism is in the air.  Pessimism is being crowded out.  The second government shut down that looked like a certainty is not going to happen.  President Trump will not get the amount of money he wanted for… Read More
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Categories: USDA

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