EPA Administrator Regan meets with biofuel leaders during Iowa visit

IARN — New Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan visited with biofuel leaders and farmers in Iowa on Tuesday.

Making his first trip since being sworn into office, Regan took a tour of the Lincolnway Energy ethanol plant near Nevada with U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. Regan also led a roundtable discussion with Iowa farmers and biofuel producers. Read more

CME Group permanently closing physical trading pits

IARN — CME Group announced this week it will not reopen its physical trading pits that were closed last March due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes the trading pits for corn, wheat, soybeans and other ag commodities. Contracts for ag commodities will be traded only electronically. However, CME Group’s Eurodollar options pit, which was reopened last August, will remain open, allowing these contracts to continue to trade in both open outcry and electronic venues. Read more

USDA monitoring crop development amid cold, drought concerns

IARN — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is monitoring crop development in the Midwest as Ag areas deal with drought concerns and cooler than average temperatures.

What kind of impact will colder-than-usual weather have on planted crops in the Midwest? Here’s USDA meteorologist Brad Rippey. Read more

Ag Economy Barometer mostly unchanged in April

IARN — The April Ag Economy Barometer was 178, virtually unchanged from a month earlier. This month, the index stands at 177, and just five points below its all-time high of 183 set back in October. Compared to March, however, there was a small change in producers’ perspective on the ag economy as they became more optimistic about the future, while their appraisal of the current situation waned. In April, the Index of Future Expectations rose five points to 169, and the Index of Current Conditions moved down seven points to 195. Read more