Publications

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  • Potential Farm-Level Effects of Eliminating Direct Payments

    EIB-103, November 16, 2012

    A number of Farm Act proposals call for ending the direct payment program. ERS analysis suggests that for the majority of farms receiving direct payments, this would not result in substantial decline in financial well-being.

  • Oil Crops Outlook: October 2012

    OCS-12J, October 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.

  • Oil Crops Outlook: September 2012

    OCS-12I, September 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.

  • Oil Crops Outlook: August 2012

    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

  • Oil Crops Outlook: July 2012

    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.

  • Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook: February 2011

    SSSM-270, May 08, 2012

    The two primary determinants of U.S. sugar supply and use over the long-term projection period are the sugar and energy provisions of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (2008 Farm Act) and reliance on sugar imports from Mexico to maintain a balance in the U.S. sugar market.

  • U.S. Sugar April 2012

    SSSM-284, April 16, 2012

    On March 30, 2012, the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) published Prospective Plantings, with forecasts included for planted-area intentions for the 2012/13 U.S. sugarbeet crop. Planted area is forecast at 1.241 million acres. While this amount is less than a percentage point above last year's realized planted area of 1.233 million acres, it is 4.6 percent above last year's intended area projected in March 2011. With the assumption of normal growing conditions, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) expects an additional 130,000 short tons, raw value (STRV) of beet sugar production to occur before the end of the fiscal year (FY) 2012 for a total of 4.655 million STRV. There were no changes from last month for FY 2012 cane sugar production.

  • The Future of Environmental Compliance Incentives in U.S. Agriculture

    EIB-94, March 14, 2012

    If direct payment programs, which are now subject to environmental compliance, are reduced or eliminated, what would be some impacts of applying environmental compliance provisions to crop insurance?

  • Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook: March 2012

    SSSM-283, March 14, 2012

    Based on revised analysis of data from the Comite Nacional Para El Desarrollo Sustentable de la Cana de Azucar (CNDSCA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) made corrections to its Mexico 2010/11 sugar supply and sweetener use from last month. Sugar for human consumption is estimated at 3.950 million metric tons (mt) and ending stocks are estimated at 759,906 mt. Also, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) consumption is estimated at 1.635 million mt, dry weight.

  • Government Commodity Payments Continue To Shift to Larger Farms, Higher Income Households

    Amber Waves, March 01, 2012

    As agricultural production has shifted to farms with larger sales, so, too, has the distribution of commodity-related program payments. Unless the design of commodity programs changes substantially, current payment trends are likely to continue.

  • Limited Base Acre Provision in the 2008 Farm Act Yields Small Budgetary Savings

    Amber Waves, March 01, 2012

    The base 10 provision of the 2008 Farm Act prohibits farms with 10 or fewer base acres from receiving direct and countercyclical payments (DCP) or ACRE program payments. In 2009, payments prohibited under the provision totaled $29.1 million, compared with over $5 billion total DCP and ACRE payments.

  • Identifying Federal Farm Programs’ Potential Overlaps

    Amber Waves, March 01, 2012

    Because farm program designs and purposes vary, producers may participate in, and receive benefits from, multiple programs on the same farm, increasing the potential for overlap.

  • Visualizing Farm Program Participation and Benefits Across the U.S.

    Amber Waves, March 01, 2012

    ERS's Farm Program Atlas provides access to an array of public data that enable users to visually explore the geographic distribution of participation and benefits from seven key Federal farm programs at national, State, and county levels.

  • Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook: February 2012

    SSSM-282, February 14, 2012

    The Comite Nacional Para El Desarrollo Sustentable de la Cana de Azucar (CNDSCA) in Mexico recently published revised supply and use data for 2010/11 and the Secretariat of the Economy (Economia) released full marketing year data for sugar exports and imports. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) revised its Mexico supply and balance estimates as a consequence.

  • Changing Farm Structure and the Distribution of Farm Payments and Federal Crop Insurance

    EIB-91, February 06, 2012

    A long-term shift in production toward larger farms has affected the distribution of commodity-related Federal program payments and Federal crop insurance, with the share of payments going to larger farms increasing.

  • Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook: January 2012

    SSSM-281, January 18, 2012

    The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) projects 2011/12 sugar production in Mexico at 5.000 million metric tons (mt), a decrease of 330,000 mt from last month's projection. The forecast is based on lower than expected harvest progress through January 7, 2012 and consequent implications for the rest of the harvest cycle. The USDA lowered its forecast of Mexican sugar imports from 449,000 mt to 310,000 mt. The decrease is attributable to a lower import pace-to-date from the two tariff-rate quotas (TRQs) opened earlier in the year by Mexico and scheduled to close by the end of January. Lower estandar sugar prices in Mexico contributed to the lower than expected fill level. The USDA did not change its forecast of sugar deliveries or ending stock levels. The USDA lowered its forecast of Mexico sugar exports by 469,000 mt to 892,000 mt in order to balance sugar use with the sugar supply reductions.

  • Agricultural Income and Finance Outlook, 2011 Edition

    AIS-91, December 14, 2011

    Net farm income is forecast at $100.9 billion in 2011, up 28 percent from 2010 and 50 percent higher than the 10-year average of $67.4 billion for 2001-2010. Net cash income at $109.8 billion would be a nominal record, 19 percent above the prior record attained in 2010. Net value added is expected to increase by almost $24 billion in 2011 to $153.7 billion. Production expenses are forecast to jump substantially in 2011 to a record nominal high exceeding $300 billion. Prices paid indexes drive the forecast increase. Inflation-adjusted 2011 production expenses will exceed the previous peak reached in 1979. The values of farm business sector assets and equity (assets minus debt) are forecast to rise in 2011, while farm debt is forecast to decline from 2010 levels. Farm sector asset values are expected to rise by 6.8 percent in 2011 as the values of land and farm buildings, crop inventories, purchased inputs, machinery and equipment and financial assets are all expected to rise in 2011. Farm sector debt is expected to fall from about $247 billion in 2010 to about $243 billion in 2011. The decline in real estate debt is expected to be about $4 billion (-3.0 percent). The farm business sector's debt-to-asset ratio is expected to decline to 10.4 percent and debt-to-equity is expected to decline to 11.6 percent in 2011, indicating that the farm sector's solvency position remains strong. Average net cash income for farm businesses is expected to increase throughout most of the country in 2011, although income growth is not as high as experienced in 2010. High commodity prices for both crops and livestock are driving these increases, despite increasing expenses in all categories other than labor. Except for poultry, high prices in 2011 have helped the livestock sector to continue the strong performance of 2010 despite an environment of increasing feed expenses. Driven by the gains in most crop and livestock farms, all regions other than the Southern Seaboard are expected to experience at least a 7-percent improvement in average net cash income over 2010. Median farm household income increased by 3.7 percent in 2010 to $54,162 and is forecast to be higher in 2011. Bolstered by higher farm asset values, the balance sheet of farm households improved in 2010, with median net worth increasing by 6.5 percent to $576,745.

  • Identifying Overlap in the Farm Safety Net

    EIB-87, November 22, 2011

    ERS offers a conceptual framework for identifying overlap in farm safety net programs, including how to define and measure overlap. The study also suggests a direction for further analysis.

  • Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook: September 2011

    SSSM-277, September 15, 2011

    On September 12, 2011, the USDA released its latest U.S. and Mexico sugar supply and use estimates for fiscal year (FY) 2011 and projections for FY 2012 in the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report. For FY 2011, the USDA increased its estimate of tariff-rate quota (TRQ) shortfall and accounted for early entry of imports from the FY 2012 raw sugar TRQ and deferral of some FY 2011 raw sugar TRQ imports until the first month of the next fiscal year. For FY 2012, the USDA reduced its projection of beet sugar production to 4.575 million short tons, raw value (STRV), a reduction of 175,000 STRV, or 3.7 percent, compared with last month's projection. The reduction was made in response to lower sugarbeet production forecasts by the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). NASS forecast sugarbeet production at 29.180 million tons, a reduction of 1.213 million tons, or 4.0 percent compared with last month's forecast. NASS cited wet field conditions, along with disease and hail damage, in half of the sugarbeet growing areas as reasons for reduced production prospects. No change was made to the FY 2012 cane sugar production forecast. Trade and total use projections remained the same as last month's as well. Ending stocks projected for FY 2012 are decreased 215,000 STRV (lower beet sugar production combined with fewer beginning stocks) to 1.127 million STRV. The implied stocks-to-use ratio is 9.8 percent, a drop of 1.9 percentage points from last month. Supply and use estimates and forecasts in Mexico remained the same as those for last month.

  • Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook: August 2011

    SSSM-276, August 16, 2011

    The FY 2012 TRQ for raw cane sugar is set at 1,231,497 short tons, raw value (STRV), or 1,117,195 metric tons, raw value (MTRV), the minimum to which the United States is committed under the World Trade Organization (WTO) Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture.