2018 is going to be a good year for sugarbeet growers. With the amended Mexican antidumping and countervailing duty suspension agreements going into effect last October, the beet crop going into the ground this spring will fully benefit from the price recovery provided by the amended agreements. Yes, there is and always will be work to defend and maintain the suspension agreements and make sure that Mexico complies with the provisions, but it is in the interest of both governments and industries that these agreements work as they were intended. These agreements will manage sugar imports from Mexico so there is no need for any discussions with Mexico regarding sugar in the NAFTA negotiations. What everyone must also realize is that USDA needs the best production and consumption data available to determine how much additional sugar is needed from Mexico or other quota-holding countries. Working with USDA to get that critical information is very important so they do not make decisions that oversupply the U.S. sugar market with imports. This is a very high priority for our industry.
Crop Insurance: There has been some confusion this spring over the new 2017 definition of “practical to replant.” However, it does not apply to sugarbeets. The change was made to the FCIC “basic provisions” covering all crops, but the sugarbeet policy has its own “special provisions” that contain a separate definition of “practical to replant” that remains untouched. The following is an explanation of the issue by our crop insurance legal counsel Ken Ackerman.
On April 10, USDA issued its most important supply and demand estimate of the year. Once this estimate is finalized, USDA typically uses this information to make a decision on any additional imports from our foreign suppliers.
This Issue's Topics Include: Roundup Ready Lawsuit ~ Crop Insurance ~ 2010 Elections
Roundup Ready Lawsuit
On January 19, the plaintiffs in the Roundup Ready® lawsuit asked the U.S. District Court (9th Circuit)
for a preliminary injunction to stop the “further planting, cultivation, processing, or other use of Roundup
Ready sugar beets or sugar beet seeds, including the flowering of any sugar beet seed crop, until the environmental impact statement (‘EIS’) has been completed and finally approved as required by the
National Environmental Policy Act (‘NEPA’)”. They have requested a March 5 date for Judge Jeffrey
White to hear their argument.
Luther Markwart, author of Dateline Washington, is executive vice president of the American Sugarbeet Growers Association.