No. of Recommendations: 3
www.fastcompany.com/90240606/chinas-hunger-for-soybeans-is-a...
Virtually all the world’s soybeans–a crop used for food products but mostly as the basis of feed for livestock like pigs–come from the U.S., Brazil, and Argentina. China used to grow its own soybeans–the soybean, in fact, originated in eastern China....

Sixty percent of all soybeans grown worldwide are now exported to China, with 5% to 8% growth per year....The steadily growing demand is largely driven by expanding hog and poultry operations that use soymeal for feed....

In northern China, where soybeans were once traditionally grown, water tables are dropping at a rate of up to 10 feet a year. Northern China (and parts of the west) is running out of water....To produce just one ton of soybeans, it takes 1,500 tons of water. China’s ambitious plans to divert rivers from the south to irrigate the north are in trouble now for ecological and political reasons.

DB2
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 3
China’s ambitious plans to divert rivers from the south to irrigate the north are in trouble now for ecological and political reasons.

Recently I watched a video (uTube) about reclaiming Mongolia's landscape from the advancing desert which, in turn, was the unintended consequence of Mao's program to farm the apparently fertile Mongolia. The fertility was real but fragile, Mongolia could only support a sparce population. With the inflow of millions of farmers the Mongolian ecosystem was upset leading to erosion and desertification -- like the dustbowl in the USA which John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath so brilliantly described.

I still remember reading the first page of The Grapes of Wrath, never before had I come across such powerful description, as vivid as watching a movie. I had to stop to absorb it fully. That page alone justified John Steinbeck's reputation.

Our world is fragile, we better take good care of Gaia. Beware unintended consequences!

The Captain
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 3
...like the dustbowl in the USA which John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath so brilliantly described.

I had always heard about the dust bowl and The Grapes of Wrath. When I finally got around to reading the book I was surprised to find that the Joads left their tenant farm not because of the weather but because they were "tractored off". With a tractor to replace horses and mules, the farmer needed far fewer people to work the land.

DB2
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 3
With a tractor to replace horses and mules, the farmer needed far fewer people to work the land.

Progress continues to eliminate brawn jobs while creating brain jobs. Computer programmers seem to be in short supply. Creative destruction.

John Steinbeck focused on the worker who lost his job, not on the land owner who lost his farm. Perpectives....

The Captain
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 5
With a tractor to replace horses and mules, the farmer needed far fewer people to work the land.

Progress continues to eliminate brawn jobs while creating brain jobs.

-----------------------------------------

I looked at the US Dept of Agriculture (USDA) statistics from the 1930s. Since the subject of this post is soybeans, I looked at the soybean production for 1938 and compared to this year's estimates. The soybean crop is more important today than in the 1930s. In 1938, only 3 million acres were harvested. This compares to 89 million acres today.

In 1938, the average yield was 20.2 bushels per acre. This year, it will be close to 51 bushels per acre. Improvements in farming techniques, including better machinery and improved plant varieties, have resulted in much more production per average acre of land.

1938 total soybean harvest: 63 million bushels
2018 total soybean harvest: 4.7 billion bushels

Recent trend in yield:
https://www.nass.usda.gov/Charts_and_Maps/Field_Crops/soyyld...

Production:
https://www.nass.usda.gov/Charts_and_Maps/Field_Crops/soypro...
-----------------------------------------

Corn is another important crop. There are actually slightly fewer acres harvested for corn today than in 1938. However, the yield per acre is much larger.

1938 average corn yield: 27.8 bushels per acre
2018 average corn yield: 181.3 bushels per acre
https://www.nass.usda.gov/Charts_and_Maps/Field_Crops/cornyl...

1938 total corn harvest: 2.5 billion bushels
2018 total corn harvest: 14.8 billion bushels
https://www.nass.usda.gov/Charts_and_Maps/Field_Crops/cornpr...

- Pete
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 1
China to Announce Resumption in U.S. Soy Purchases Soon
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/china-announce-resumption-u-s...
China intends to announce this month the first batch of U.S. soybean purchases where most, if not all, will be destined for state reserves, according to government officials.

The final decision will be made by the State Council or cabinet, said the people, who declined to be identified as the matter is confidential. Details to be decided include whether the volume should be 5 million tons or 8 million tons and if commercial companies should buy a further 2 million tons and be reimbursed for the 25 percent tariffs, the people said.

DB2
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
China to Announce Resumption in U.S. Soy Purchases Soon

China's Unipec set to resume US crude oil imports 'very soon'
www.spglobal.com/platts/en/market-insights/latest-news/oil/1...
Chinese state-owned Unipec, the country's biggest importer of US crude, will resume imports from the US "very soon" and the volumes will likely be significant, a senior executive told S&P Global Platts.

DB2
Print the post Back To Top