Publications

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  • Outlook for U.S. Agricultural Trade: May 2017

    AES-99, May 25, 2017

    This report discusses May 2017 USDA forecasts for U.S. agricultural trade in FY2017. Exports are forecast at $137.0 billion in FY2017 and imports are expected to reach $114.5 billion, resulting in a trade surplus of $22.5 billion.

  • Outlook for U.S. Agricultural Trade: November 2012

    AES-76, November 29, 2012

    Fiscal 2013 agricultural exports are forecast at a record $145 billion, up $9.2 billion above 2012 exports. Imports at record $115 billion.

  • Outlook for U.S. Agricultural Trade: November 2016

    AES-97, November 30, 2016

    This report discusses November 2016 USDA forecasts for U.S. agricultural trade in FY2017. Exports are forecast at $134.0 billion in FY2017 and imports are expected to reach $112.5 billion, resulting in a trade surplus of $21.5 billion.

  • Outlook for U.S. Agricultural Trade: November 2017

    AES-102, November 30, 2017

    This report discusses November 2017 USDA forecasts for U.S. agricultural trade in FY2018. Exports are forecast at $140.0 billion in FY2018 and imports are expected to reach $117.0 billion, resulting in a trade surplus of $23.0 billion.

  • Pork Quality and the Role of Market Organization

    AER-835, November 08, 2004

    This study addresses changes in the organization of the U.S. pork industry, most notably marketing contracts between packers and producers, by exploring their function in addressing pork quality concerns. A number of developments brought quality concerns to the forefront. These include health concerns and corresponding preferences for lean pork, growing incidence of undesirable quality attributes (e.g., pale, soft, and exudative (PSE) meat, a result of breeding for leanness), heightened concerns over food safety and related regulatory programs, and expansion into global markets. Organizational arrangements can facilitate industry efforts to address pork quality needs by reducing measuring costs, controlling quality attributes that are difficult to measure, facilitating adaptations to changing quality standards, and reducing transaction costs associated with relationship-specific investments in branding programs.

  • Productivity Gains Increase U.S. Commercial Pork Production

    Amber Waves, March 04, 2013

    Commercial pork production in the United States increased 174 percent from 1977 to 2012 from slaughtering more and bigger hogs. Public and private research and development during the period led to efficiency gains that have altered the structure of the pork industry.

  • Productivity Growth Slows for Specialized Hog Finishing Operations

    Amber Waves, February 03, 2014

    U.S. hog farm numbers dropped by 70 percent over 1991-2009 while hog inventories remained stable. The result has been an industry with larger hog enterprises, increased specialization in a single phase of production, greater reliance on purchased rather than homegrown feed, and greater use of production contracts. This structural change has led to higher productivity and lower pork prices.

  • Productivity Growth and the Revival of Russian Agriculture

    ERR-228, April 25, 2017

    Russia’s southern district spurred national agricultural recovery due to competitive advantages. Other districts without such advantages have lagged behind.

  • Profits, Costs, and the Changing Structure of Dairy Farming

    ERR-47, September 04, 2007

    ERS examines economic factors in the dramatic decline in the number of dairy farms over the past 15 years and the increasing concentration in the industry.

  • Provisions of the Food Security Act of 1985

    AIB-498, April 01, 1986

    The Food Security Act of 1985 (P.L. 99-198) establishes a comprehensive framework within which the Secretary of Agriculture will administer agriculture and food programs from 1986 through 1990. This report describes the Act's provisions for dairy, wool and mohair, wheat, feed grains, cotton, rice, peanuts, soybeans, and sugar (including income and price supports, disaster payments, and acreage reductions); other general commodity provisions; trade; conservation; credit; research, extension, and teaching; food stamps; and marketings. These provisions are compared with earlier legislation.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, November 01, 2006

    Research area charts from the November 2006 issue of Amber Waves.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, September 01, 2006

    Research area charts from the September 2006 issue of Amber Waves.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, April 01, 2008

    Research area charts from the April 2008 issue of Amber Waves.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, June 01, 2006

    Research area charts from the June 2006 issue of Amber Waves.

  • Research Investments and Market Structure in the Food Processing, Agricultural Input, and Biofuel Industries Worldwide: Executive Summary

    EIB-90, December 30, 2011

    Meeting growing global demand for food, fiber, and biofuel requires robust investment in agricultural research and development (R&D) from both public and private sectors. This report highlights the major findings of a study examining global R&D spending by private industry in seven agricultural input sectors, food manufacturing, and biofuel and describes the changing structure of these industries. For the full report, see Research Investments and Market Structure in the Food Processing, Agricultural Input, and Biofuel Industries Worldwide, ERR-130. In 2007 (the latest year for which comprehensive estimates are available), the private sector spent $19.7 billion on food and agricultural research (56 percent in food manufacturing and 44 percent in agricultural input sectors) and accounted for about half of total public and private spending on food and agricultural R&D in high-income countries. In R&D related to biofuel, annual private-sector investments are estimated to have reached $1.47 billion worldwide by 2009. Incentives to invest in R&D are influenced by market structure and other factors. Agricultural input industries have undergone significant structural change over the past two decades, with industry concentration on the rise. A relatively small number of large, multinational firms with global R&D and marketing networks account for most R&D in each input industry. Rising market concentration has not generally been associated with increased R&D investment as a percentage of industry sales.

  • Response to U.S. Foodborne Illness Outbreaks Associated with Imported Produce

    AIB-789-5, February 28, 2004

    This report examines how U.S. and other nations responded to foodborne illness outbreaks traced to internationally-traded food.

  • Restrictions on Antibiotic Use for Production Purposes in U.S. Livestock Industries Likely To Have Small Effects on Prices and Quantities

    Amber Waves, November 24, 2015

    Antibiotics are used widely in livestock production for control, prevention, and treatment of disease, and for “production purposes” such as growth promotion. The most recent estimates suggest that approximately 40 percent of finishing hogs in 2009 and up to about half of broilers in 2011 received antibiotics for production purposes.

  • Retail and Consumer Aspects of the Organic Milk Market

    LDPM-155-01, May 22, 2007

    Consumer interest in organic milk has burgeoned, resulting in rapid growth in retail sales of organic milk. New analysis of scanner data from 2004 finds that most purchasers of organic milk are White, high income, and well educated. The data indicate that organic milk purchased carries the USDA organic seal about 60 percent of the time, most organic milk is sold in supermarkets, organic price premiums are large and vary by region, and most organic milk is branded.

  • Rising Russian Meat Production Reduces Imports

    Amber Waves, October 05, 2015

    During its transition from a planned to a market economy that began in the early 1990’s, Russia has been a large importer of meat. By the early 2000's, the country had become the largest foreign market for U.S. poultry broilers. However, in 2009 Russian meat imports began to fall, including from the United States, with the import decline coinciding with growth in domestic meat production.

  • Russia's Growing Agricultural Imports: Causes and Outlook

    WRS-09-04, May 15, 2009

    During the 2000s, Russian agricultural imports have grown considerably, from $7 billion in 2000 to $33 billion in 2008. This import growth has made Russia the second largest agricultural importer among emerging markets, after China. The main reasons for the import rise are macroeconomic-high growth in Russian gross domestic product, which increases consumer income and purchasing power, and real appreciation of the ruble, which makes imports less expensive vis-a-vis domestically produced goods. The economic crisis that hit Russia (and the world) in autumn 2008 makes the outlook for Russia's agricultural imports uncertain in the short term. However, the Russian economy is expected to stabilize within a year or two, at which time agricultural imports should continue to grow, although at a lower rate than in past years.