Monday, August 19, 2019

Members in the News: Dorfman, Zhang, Lusk, Van Loo, Caputo, Fan, Tonsor, Deller, Boehm, Dennis, and Dinterman

Jeffrey Dorfman, University of Georgia
Kemp Names UGA Professor as New State Fiscal Economist
By: Office of Georgia Governor Brian P. Kemp - August 12, 2019
Today Governor Brian P. Kemp is proud to announce the appointment of long-time University of Georgia professor Jeffrey H. Dorfman as State Fiscal Economist. The State Fiscal Economist develops forecasts based on Georgia's tax revenue, works closely with bond rating agencies on revenue and economic trends, and manages the development of fiscal impact estimates on tax-related legislative proposals.
"Given Jeffrey Dorfman's extensive background and expertise in economics, I am confident that he is the right choice to serve as the State Fiscal Economist. Over the years, Jeffrey has earned a stellar reputation in his field, mentored countless students to ensure their academic success, and provided critical insight to leaders in the private and public sectors," stated Governor Kemp.

Wendong Zhang, Iowa State University
Farmers back Trump's tariff fight, but don't think it helps them
By: NBC News - August 11, 2019
The survey, led by ISU Professor Wendong Zhang, found that 57 percent of those farmers somewhat or strongly supported the U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods that brought retaliatory tariffs from the Chinese government. Another 14 percent had neutral feelings about them. Only 30 percent somewhat or strongly opposed the tariffs.
There’s a caveat with those numbers. They come from a survey taken in March and April, before the latest exchange of trade blows between the United States and China. But fundamentally, the trade story has been on a stable trajectory. And, overall, the survey results suggest farmers still support Team Trump’s fight by a solid margin.
Read more on: NBC News

Jayson Lusk, Purdue University
Ellen Van Loo, Wageningen University
Vincenzina Caputo, Michigan State University
Consumers still prefer beef over alternatives
By: Feedstuff - August 9, 2019
Purdue University head of agricultural economics Jayson Lusk, along with Ghent University post-doctoral research fellow Ellen Van Loo and Michigan State University agricultural economist Vincenzina Caputo, surveyed about 1,800 U.S. food consumers earlier this year and asked them to make a number of simulated shopping choices.
In each choice, consumers had five options: They could buy conventional farm-raised beef, a plant-based burger made with pea protein (i.e., Beyond Meat), a plant-based burger made with animal-like protein (i.e., Impossible Foods) or lab-grown meat (i.e., Memphis Meats), or they could choose not to buy any of the products (i.e., “none”).
Read more on: Feedstuff

Shenggen Fan, International Food Policy Research Institute
Food systems hurting the planet
Written by Kathleen Rogers and Shenggen Fan: Bangkok Post - August 12, 2019
The way we produce, consume and discard food is no longer sustainable. That much is clear from the newly released UN climate change report which warns that we must rethink how we produce our food -- and quickly -- to avoid the most devastating impacts of global food production, including massive deforestation, staggering biodiversity loss and accelerating climate change.
While it's not often recognised, the food industry is an enormous driver of climate change, and our current global food system is pushing our natural world to the breaking point. At the press conference releasing the Special Report on Climate Change and Land, report co-chair Eduardo Calvo Buendia stated that "the food system as a whole -- which includes food production and processing, transport, retail consumption, loss and waste -- is currently responsible for up to a third of our global greenhouse gas emissions."
Read more on: Bangkok Post, IOL Africa, This Day, and San Francisco Examiner

Glynn Tonsor, Kansas State University
‘We’ve had this fear for years’: After Tyson fire, cattle producers look for options as prices tumble
By: Leavenworth Times - August 12, 2019
“Anybody that had cattle that were not priced, that were waiting in the feedlot to be sold, their inventory already went down in value, so that kind of disruption has already occurred,” said Glynn Tonsor, an agricultural economics professor at Kansas State University.
Tonsor said it was difficult to assess the long-term impact without knowing how long the Holcomb plant will be down. The cattle that would have gone to the Holcomb plant will have to be re-routed, he said, and the associated costs will apply downward pressure on cattle prices.
Read more on: Leavenworth Times

Steven Deller, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Wisconsin dairy generates $45.6 billion economic impact
By: Lodi Enterprise - August 13, 2019
The report titled “The Contribution of Agriculture to the Wisconsin Economy” is based on the most recent data available (2017) and updates research conducted every five years by UW—Madison under the direction of Professor Steven Deller at the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics and Extension’s Center for Community Economic Development. Total agricultural economic impact grew from $88.3 billion to $104.8 billion with dairy’s impact growing to $45.6 billion.
“It is clear that agriculture – and particularly dairy – plays a critical role in Wisconsin’s economy,” says Deller, adding, “To put this in perspective, dairy’s economic impact is twice that of another key growing industry, Wisconsin tourism. It also shows dairy is Wisconsin’s signature industry and is central to our state’s identity.”
Read more on: Lodi Enterprise

Rebecca Boehm, Union of Concerned Scientist
Honeybee colonies face uncertain future
By: Global News - July 14, 2019
For decades, honeybee populations have been declining, largely due to human error threatening a multi-billion dollar crop growth industry. As Reggie Cecchini reports, now a decision by the White House could put even more strain on an already fragile resource.
Rebecca Boehm states, "Understanding what's going on with bee colonies, their sizes, if they're declining at rapid rates, that continuous data collection is essential."
Listen on: Global News

Elliot Dennis, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Primed for pork: Hog barn operations are a win-win in Nebraska
By: SouthernMinn - August 14, 2019
“If people add a hog operation to a farm operation, it doesn’t change liquidity, doesn’t affect — on average — farm financial stress on ability to make debt repayments, and sometimes improves farm assets,” explained Elliot Dennis, assistant professor of agricultural economics in the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, Neb.
Dennis said that contract barns for wean-to-finish, in particular, show an encouraging trend of smoothing operating margins, with the ability for producers to “just set a price and produce”.
Read more on: SouthernMinn

Robert Dinterman, The Ohio State University
Ohio Farmers Filed Fewest Bankruptcies In Midwest
By: WOSU Public Media - August 15, 2019
Ohio State agribusiness researcher Robert Dinterman says land values are up this year, by 1.5% on average in the state.
“Bigger diversity in agricultural commodities and changes in property tax values are really what’s buoying the farmland values in Ohio,” Dinterman says.
Dinterman adds that U.S. tariffs on China have also had an impact nationally, but Ohio farmers do not feel it as much, because of the diversity of commodities in the state.
Read more on: WOSU Public Media

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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 2019 AAEA Annual Meeting in Atlanta.

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