Monday, December 3, 2018

Members in the News: Lee, Bozic, Lusk, Court, Walters, Rejesus, Liu, and Woods

John E. Lee, Jr., Mississippi State University
Selling off USDA research agency to the highest bidder is a mistake
Written by John E. Lee: The Hill - November 24, 2018
During August recess, USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue announced that the department would be relocating both the Economic Research Service (ERS) and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) outside of the Washington, D.C. area. Beside recruitment challenges, department cited high attrition, the difficulty of hiring agricultural economists into D.C., the desire to lower costs, and the importance of the agencies being closer to their stakeholders.
The department then asked for bids from states, cities, educational establishments, private entities, and other parties who might be interested in having all or parts of the two agencies located on their sites. Reportedly, 136 bids have been received.
Read more on: The Hill

Marin Bozic, University of Minnesota
With farm bankruptcies on the rise, a look at the economics of dairy farming in Minnesota
By: MPR News - November 27, 2018
Farm bankruptcies are on the rise in the Upper Midwest, and the situation is particularly tough for dairy farmers.
Increased dairy production, coupled with stagnating demand, have kept prices low. At the same time, trade scuffles have made it harder for farmers to reach new consumers overseas.
MPR News host Cathy Wurzer checked in with University of Minnesota dairy economist Marin Bozic for the latest on dairy farming in the state.
Listen to the audio on: MPR News

Jayson Lusk, Purdue University
COOL and fuzzy connections
By: Beef Magazine - November 22, 2018
“While it is conceptually possible that the repeal of mandatory COOL could adversely affect U.S. cattle prices, any actual effect appears to be quite small (if there is any effect at all),” concluded Jayson Lusk in his November 2016 blog.
Lusk is a distinguished professor and head of the Department of Agricultural Economics at Purdue University.
“The fact that cattle prices fell immediately after the repeal of mandatory COOL appears to be a coincidence. The falling prices seem more to do with ‘normal’ changes in supply resulting from the cattle cycle than anything to do with mandatory COOL,” he explained.
Read more on: Beef Magazine

Christa Court, University of Florida
Jackson, Calhoun among hardest hit agricultural communities following Hurricane Michael
By: WJHG - November 22, 2018
County-level estimates from the UF/IFAS Economic Impact Analysis Program (EIAP) indicate that none of the four hardest-hit counties – Jackson, Gadsden, Suwannee and Calhoun – border the coast, but collectively their producers lost about $91 million in revenues from crops, animals and animal products, said Christa Court, EIAP assistant director and an assistant scientist with the UF/IFAS food and resource economics department.
The information comes from a report issued Nov. 13 by the EIAP team, available online at
Read more on: WJHG

Cory Walters, University of Nebraska
How moral hazard affects crop insurance
Written by Cory Walters: KTIC Radio - November 29, 2018
New research by agricultural economists at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln challenges traditional thinking on federal crop insurance.
Since the inception of the federal crop insurance program, researchers have questioned whether the program causes moral hazard in input usage, meaning that if producers are shielded from yield risk via crop insurance, they respond by increasing low-yield risk exposure by applying fewer inputs. Opponents of the federal crop insurance program claim moral hazard leads farmers to use crop insurance to transfer costs from themselves to taxpayers, who help fund the program.
Read more on: KTIC Radio

Roderick Rejesus, North Carolina State University
Crop Insurance Decisions After a Two-punch Hurricane Season
By: Tobacco Farm Quarterly - November 2018
A common centerpiece of a farm's risk management plan is crop insurance. Rod Rejesus, professor and Extension specialist within the North Carolina State University's Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, is an expert on insurance and believes growers should carry, at minimum, catastrophic insurance that cover 50 percent of a crop at 55 percent of its Risk Management Agency (RMA) established price.
"It's a no-brainer," says Rejesus. "It's basically free except for administrative fees per acre." A farmer can pay more for more coverage up to 85 percent of their crop depending on country and state.
Read more on: Tobacco Farm Quarterly (see p. 6-7)

Zhongyuan Liu, University of Georgia
UGA doctoral candidate researches Chinese agriculture economics
By: Albany Herald - November 24, 2018
As part of his doctoral thesis project, University of Georgia doctoral candidate in agricultural economics Zhongyuan Liu went directly to the source to understand the impact of rural land reforms in China.
Liu used funding provided by the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Office of Global Programs Graduate International Travel Award to interview farmers, village leaders and officers in a land reform office in the Wujin district of Jiangsu province in China.
Read more on: Albany Herald

Timothy Woods, University of Kentucky
Ky. agricultural receipts hold steady, but net cash income drops
By: The Lane Report - November 29, 2018
“Kentucky fruit and vegetable producers were able to capitalize on market shortages in 2017, but prices have since returned to regional averages. This is why incomes slightly decreased this year,” said Tim Woods, UK agricultural economist. “Consumer spending increased sharply in 2018 but is expected to drop in 2019.”
Read more on: The Lane Report

See other Member in the News items
Know another AAEA Member who has made statewide, national, or international news?
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*Articles in response to the AAEA Communicating Out Strategy Press Releases highlighting: Government Relations, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Applied Economic Perspectives & Policy, Choices Magazine, General Media, and/or 2018 AAEA Annual Meeting in Washington D.C.

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