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USDA releases county cash rent data for 2010

WILLMAR -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently released the results of its 2010 cash rent survey, which indicates that the average cash rental rate for non-irrigated cropland has increased over the last year in all local counties. In some counties, the increase was rather modest, while other counties witnessed increases of up to $20 per acre.

As required by the 2008 farm bill, and in response to numerous requests from the general public, USDA now releases county-level cash rent data annually. The 2010 data mark the third consecutive year for which county-level data have been provided by USDA.

Since 1997, USDA's National Agricultural Statistical Service only published cash rental rate data at the state level.

The latest data include non-irrigated cropland average rental rates for every county in the nation. In addition, rental rate data are available for counties that have significant acres of irrigated cropland and pastureland.

The data being provided by USDA on an annual basis have a multitude of uses. For example, the Farm Service Agency uses the cash rental rate data to determine market-based rental rates for the Conservation Reserve Program.

Other state and federal governmental agencies, universities and research organizations use the data for economic analysis. In addition, the annual survey provides farmers and landowners with current information about rental rates in their county.

Data collection for the 2010 cash rent survey was conducted in June. The sample size of the 2010 survey was approximately 225,000.

All responses were passed through a computer edit to check for consistency within the report. Any suspect responses were either confirmed or corrected by USDA.

USDA announces 2010 loan rates for sugar

The USDA's Commodity Credit Corporation recently announced that the national average loan rates for 2010-crop sugar will be increased from last year's levels.

The loan rate for refined beet sugar will be 23.77 cents per pound, up from 23.45 cents in 2009. Also announced was that the loan rate for raw cane sugar will be 18.50 cents per pound, up from 18.25 cents for 2009.

The national loan rates are then adjusted to reflect transportation cost differentials to determine regional loan rates.

The 2010-crop refined beet sugar loan rate for Minnesota and the eastern half of North Dakota will be 23.64 cents per pound, up from 23.41 cents for the 2009 crop.

Under USDA's sugar loan program, local Farm Service Agency offices provide nonrecourse loans to processors of sugar beets and domestically grown sugar cane. The loans are nonrecourse as the commodity is pledged as loan collateral and processors have the option of delivering the commodity to CCC as full repayment at loan maturity.

Sugar beet and sugarcane processors who receive the loans are required to make minimum grower payments for all sugar beets and sugar cane received from growers.

Sugar beet grower minimum payments are equal to the amount specified in the grower/processor contract.

Minnesota corn supplies up 15%, soybeans up 5%

According to USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service, Minnesota's supply of old-crop corn totaled 197 million bushels on Sept. 1, up 15 percent from a year ago. On-farm corn supplies accounted for 72 million of the total bushels, down 10 percent from the previous year.

Old-crop soybean supplies in Minnesota totaled 14.9 million bushels on Sept. 1, up 5 percent from one year ago. On-farm soybean supplies accounted for 5.3 million of the total bushels, up 39 percent from one year ago.

Minnesota wheat supplies totaled 107 million bushels on Sept. 1, up 5 percent from a year ago. On-farm supplies, at 66 million bushels, accounted for 61 percent of the total.

Nationally, old-crop corn supplies totaled 1.71 billion bushels on Sept. 1, up 2 percent from a year ago. Old-crop soybean supplies totaled 151 million bushels, up 9 percent from one year ago.

USDA Service Centers closed Monday

All USDA Service Centers will be closed on Oct. 11, in observance of the Columbus Day holiday.

Wes Nelson is executive director of the USDA Farm Service Agency in Kandiyohi County.