Food & Agribusiness Talking Points 25-01-2016

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Chinese cotton imports fall

China’s cotton imports fell by 29 per cent this year, causing concerns that the Chinese government is trying to reduce its cotton stockpiles. That left the calendar year of 2015 at 1.48 million tonnes, and cotton merchant Plexus said imports could drop as low as 1 million tonnes for the year of 2016. China increased their cotton stockpiles previously in an attempt to boost domestic prices, however with bloated supplies, the government is taking action to reduce. Click here for article.


Wild bee population threatens US crop production

The first national study of the kind has shown US wild bee population to be dropping in many of the countries key agricultural areas. Research from the University of Vermont led by Insu Koh has found a decline of 23% in bee population in the contiguous US, in conjunction with 39% of cropland depending on pollinators. Pesticides, climate change, diseases all threaten the bees, but the conversion of the original bee habitat to cropland has also shown to have effect on the bee’s population. Click here for article.


Promotion and the Agricultural Minister Portfolio

With the potential promotion to Leader of the National Party for Barnaby Joyce, some are speculating whether he will stick with the Agriculture and Water Resources portfolio. Mr Joyce has been a vocal advocate for the portfolio, and has voiced his willingness to pursue the opportunities associated with implementing the $4 billion Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper. Click here for article.


Australian sorghum hopes ease on rain and China

Australian sorghum sales may be less than expected on the back of rain inconsistencies and lack in demand from China. Initially Abares, the official Australian crop bureau, had forecast an 8% increase for the 2015-16 season, with record cropping’s of 701,000 hectares. However the lack of rain in the growing regions later in the season, after promising early rains, has dampened expectations. However a strong early harvest in Queensland did produce yields of 4-5 tonnes per hectare which was an improvement on last year, means not all is bad. Click here for article.