Monday, April 12, 2021

Members in the News: Zhang, Irwin, Ortiz-Bobea, Chambers, Smith, Cash, Chen, Plastina, Lence, Vink, Khanna, Batabyal, and Koontz

Wendong Zhang, Iowa State University
Scott Irwin, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

America's Farm Belt Looks Safe From Latest U.S.-China Spat

By: Bloomberg - March 22, 2021

A new analysis from Iowa State University shows that the Asian country’s reported pig losses last year were larger than the official figures indicated. Scott Irwin, an agriculture economist at University of Illinois, said the report’s findings should translate into “large demand for both corn and soybean meal as the herd recovers for real into 2022.”

Read more on: Bloomberg

Ariel Ortiz-Bobea, Cornell University
Robert Chambers, University of Maryland

Climate change cut global agricultural productivity 21% since 1960s

By: Bloomberg, The Guardian,, Sci Tech Daily, Science Blog, & Sky News - April 1, 2021

“Our study suggests climate and weather-related factors have already had a large impact on agricultural productivity,” says Robert Chambers, professor in Agricultural and Resource Economics (AREC) at UMD and an esteemed agricultural productivity researcher. “We used the model in this paper to estimate what total factor productivity patterns would have looked like in the absence of climate change.”

Chambers and Ariel Ortiz-Bobea (lead author on this work from Cornell University and UMD AREC alum) have been pioneering new productivity calculations in agriculture to include weather data in a way that hasn’t historically been addressed, bringing new accuracy to these types of climate models.

Read more on: BloombergThe GuardianPhsy.orgSci Tech Daily, Science Blog, & Sky News

Martin Smith, Duke University

That Salmon on Your Plate Might Have Been a Vegetarian

By: The New York Times - March 24, 2021

Martin Smith, an environmental economist at Duke University who was not involved in the study, said the changes in aquaculture resulted partly from new regulations in some countries — rules in Norway, for instance, reduced the spread of sea lice in salmon farms — but mostly because the aquaculture industry had no reason to buy expensive wild fish feed once they could develop plant-based alternatives.

Read more on: The New York Times

Sean Cash, Tufts University

Chain restaurants are required to disclose calorie counts on menus. In the age of DoorDash, that's not happening.

By: The Counter - April 1, 2021

“It’s really hard to set out rules for a space that is evolving so fast,” said Sean Cash, an associate professor of agricultural economics at Tufts University who specializes in food labeling. “[The regulations] were focused on the experience of walking into a fast food restaurant, and ordering something off of the menu board.”

Read more on: The Counter

Joyce Chen, The Ohio State University

Report exposes power gap at US universities

By: Nature - March 25, 2021

Faculty members can use public salary reports to their advantage, says Joyce Chen, an economist at the Ohio State University (OSU) in Columbus. Chen says she negotiated a 20% pay raise in 2017 after a check of salary data revealed that she wasn’t paid as much as male colleagues in her department.

Read more on: Nature

Alejandro Plastina, Iowa State University
Sergio Lence, Iowa State University
Ariel Ortiz-Bobea, Cornell University

Unusual weather is behind some agricultural gains, but humans are accidentally taking credit

By: The Academic Times - March 30, 2021

A team of economists found that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has been underestimating the role that unusual weather plays in agricultural productivity, thus overestimating the effectiveness of some agricultural policies.

Read more on: The Academic Times

Nicholas Vink, University of Stellenbosch

Days of wine by the barrel are drying up for South Africa’s farmers and vinters

By: Business Maverick - April 5, 2021

According to Vink, in the past five years wine production has dropped from 1,200 million litres to 1,100 million litres, and grape production from 1.5 million tonnes in 2014 to 1.4 million tons.

Read more on: Business Maverick

Wendong Zhang, Iowa State University

Madhu Khanna, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Clean Power Plan Repeal Had Economics, Environmental Consequences

By: Illinois Ag Connection & New Herald News - April 2, 2021

"Our research takes a closer look at what greenhouse gas emission reductions would have been under the CPP, and what it would have cost for consumers and generators of electricity from all sources, including fossil fuels and renewable fuels," says Madhu Khanna, distinguished professor in the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics at U of I and Sustainability Theme Leader in the Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation (CABBI).

Read more on: Illinois Ag Connection New Herald News 

Amit Batabyal, Rochester Institute of Technology

Could Rochester join other cities considering reparations or a universal basic income?

By: Democrat & Chronicle - April 1, 2021

Amit Batabyal, an economist at Rochester Institute of Technology, said he believed Warren and other UBI or reparations advocates have good intentions. He questioned, though, both the economic and philosophical premises.

Read more on: Democrat & Chronicle

Stephen Koontz, Colorado State University

Feed grain prices, weather will drive alfalfa markets in 2021

By: High Plains Journal - April 5, 2021

Koontz said farmers first have to understand how the soybean meal price, that protein component of the livestock diet, will pull alfalfa prices up along with it.

Read more on: High Plains Journal


See other Member in the News items

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*Disclaimer - This email is to acknowledge citations of current AAEA members and/or their research in any public media channel. AAEA does not agree nor disagree with the views or attitudes of cited outside publications.

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