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Grain News – Tariffs, Weather and Strikes

Good Morning-

Tariffs, weather and strikes are supplying uncertainty in grain markets.  The June 1 deadline approaches for the US tariffs on EU steel and aluminum.  It also looks like Mexico and Canada will be included in tariffs on these products.  Long range weather models are showing more warmth as we move into the summer.  While in the near term the corn rating this week tied a record indicating one of the best starts to a growing season while areas including Illinois received helpful rain yesterday.  Brazilian truckers on strike are slowly getting back to work having effected grain movement but most notably the poultry industry with 64 million birds already culled.  The Canadian Pacific Railway reached a deal with more than 3,000 workers with union Teamsters on strike to continue operations.

After yesterday’s sell off end users and exporters stepped up to give grains a foothold.  South Korea booked 4 cargoes of September corn.  Weekly EIA reports should show a slowdown in ethanol grind with margins pulling back.  While in Soybeans Egypt booked 3 cargos of US new crop soybeans out of the Gulf.  Wheat harvest is moving into Oklahoma as growers are pulling off good quality wheat although as expected yields are poor dues to the extended dryness they have experienced.

Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain News – Heat Breaking Later this Week with Chances of Rain

With Memorial Day behind us and most of the crop in the ground, the market will now concentrate on weather.  Much of central U.S. saw high temperatures in the 90’s to 100’s this weekend putting some early stress on the crops.  Weather forecast show the heat breaking later this week with chances of rain.  It seems like fund money is back as players in the grain markets.

Last week we saw contract highs for December corn.  In spite of all the volatility, we’re still in a bullish market.  American and Chinese leaders put planned tariffs on hold as talks continue.  It now seems like China will be a player in the agriculture markets.  The USDA crop ratings will be out this afternoon.  Keep pricing new crop corn as it rallies.

Wheat closed last week on a higher note, with KC wheat leading and Chicago following suit.  The rising wheat market is driven by concerns of dryness in Canada, Australia and Russia.  US HRW harvest is expected to push into Oklahoma.  US spring wheat planting is winding down.  Look for support in the wheat market with crop size concerns in Russia and the US HRW crop.

Soybeans will continue to be volatile on concerns of trade with China.  The back and forth of trade talks between the US and China keep the traders on their toes.  Soybean planting progress expected to be 65-70% complete.  Look for weaker trade going into the short week.

Keep in touch with your grain marketing specialist and keep your offers working for you.  As planting continues please stay safe.

Posted in Blog, Grain

Stadt Receives TRALA Driver of the Year Award


COTTAGE GROVE, WI, May 24, 2018 – Landmark Services Cooperative (LSC) is proud to announce that David Stadt was nominated and awarded the Truck Renting and Leasing Association’s (TRALA) 2018 Driver of the Year Award in recognition of his outstanding service in safety and in the community.

The TRALA award is based on exceptional safe driving and community service. David has logged more than one million miles over his 20-year truck driving career. He is also an active community member who served as a 4-H leader and is currently involved with his local FFA chapter, church council, Sunday school and community garden.

During the past six years as a Logistics Driver, David has been a dedicated Landmark employee and top performer. LSC is extremely fortunate to have such a valued employee committed to safety and excellence, both on the road and in the community.

“Numerous customers regularly request David as their delivery driver because he is careful, clean and well-respected for his assurance in doing every job flawlessly,” expresses Mike Halvensleben, vice president of Landmark Logistics. “David strives for perfection and is a shining example of all Logistics drivers.”

TRALA is a voluntary, non-profit national trade association founded in 1978 to serve as a unified and focused voice for the truck renting and leasing industry. TRALA’s mission is to foster a positive legislative and regulatory climate within which companies engaged in leasing and renting vehicles and trailers, as well as related businesses, can compete without discrimination in the North American marketplace.

Landmark Services Cooperative is a member-owned cooperative business dedicated to providing both rural and urban customers with the highest quality products and services. For 85 years, Landmark has been providing agronomy, energy and retail services, animal nutrition, grain, retail and transportation products and services to its more than 11,000 members in southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois. Employing more than 540 people in rural areas and reaching sales in excess of $387 million, Landmark provides the benefits of volume buying and access to state-of-the-art technology to its members while maintaining a hands-on, customer service-oriented approach in each of the communities it serves. For more information, visit, or call 800-236-3276.


David Stadt is presented with the Driver of the Year Award. Pictured from left to right Mike Halvensleben, vice president of Landmark Logistics; Dorothy Patterson, administrative assistant of Landmark Logistics; David Stadt, Logistics driver; Jim Dell, CEO and president of Landmark.

Posted in Landmark News

Grain News – Moving Money into the Grains

Markets showed good improvement overnight and into the morning session. Managed money and technical buying moving money into the grains. Open interest in corn was up 21,000 contracts and open interest in Chicago wheat was up about 10,000 contracts.

Locally, farmers are focusing on the weather as they aim to get the rest of their acres in. Parts of northern Iowa and southern Minnesota saw rains the last couple days. However, the forecast seems to be drier for the few days ahead of us, which should hopefully allow for some planting progress. Temperatures in the Midwest are running higher than normal, with a hot Memorial Day weekend ahead of us. The southern US plains are still waiting for a decent rain. Oklahoma and Texas panhandles saw anywhere from 0.10″ – 0.60″ of rain with above average temperatures. There are some isolated storms in the forecast for next week. The Black Sea and western Russian region are still warm and dry as well.

Exports weren’t two exciting this morning as the USDA announced sales of 264,000 tons of new crop beans to an unknown destination and a sorghum cancellation of 132,000 tons. Traders are continuing to watch the trade relationship with China. We’ll wait to see how big their purchases of US Soybeans will actually be as China aims to make a political statement.  If you haven’t made many bean sales, now may be the time while the trade truce is still intact. Through the rally in the futures markets, bean basis seems to be holding steady while corn basis is softer and on the defensive. Keep chipping away at your corn sales as we start to see profitable numbers.

Have a great day!

Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain News – Trade war is “on hold”

The US corn planting progress reported this week had the US at 81% completed which is right at the average pace for this time of year.  Wisconsin was reported at 56% completed as we continue to lag here with all the rain.   Soybeans were reported ahead of average at 56% completed, compared to 44% on average.  Wisconsin was at 33% complete.  Spring wheat planting progress has improved at 79% complete vs 80% on average.

The markets this week have been reacting to headlines and tweets around the trade war with China.  The US Treasury Secretary aid said that the trade war is “on hold” for now as they work on trade agreements.  This has provided support to the markets once again.  One premise of any deal to reduce the trade deficit would be China importing more US agricultural and energy products.  Positive news to an already robust demand picture.

As we started trade out this morning corn, soybeans and wheat were all trading higher.  The planting progress numbers were generally bearish so this strength has been led by wheat.  Continued concerns over global dryness in wheat production areas around the world provides support.  It is a bit dry in Russia, Argentina, Australia as well as the US growing areas.  Nothing drastic yet but something to keep an eye on.  The Brazil corn production forecast continues to be trimmed just a bit as less than ideal rains have been received in some areas.   Also in Brazil truck drivers blocked roads leading to grain ports as a protest to higher fuel prices there.

The markets continue to provide some selling opportunities with these news headlines and crop progress concerns.  Demand has been strong and things are changing a bit; however, the fundamentals, especially in soybeans still show an abundance of supply in the short term.  Keep your offers in front of the market and keep selling as opportunities arise.  If the balance of the US crop gets planted and progresses without any major growing season issues, we can easily trade lower.

Let us know how we can help put a plan together that works for you.  Tell us what you are looking for and together we can figure out how to get there.  Be safe out there.

Doug Cropp




Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain News – Stronger Dollar from Raising Interest Rates

Wow, the weather has really straightened out in the last couple of days. We are seeing planting starting back up again before the weekend weather hits. The weather throughout the US continues to be warm with rain in the forecast. The weather in Brazil has rain coming in for the weekend. The trade is seeing no major weather issues or threats. The dollar is also stronger from raising interest rates.

Below is the weekly export. The US exported more bean meal than beans this last week. The US did make a sale to unknown this morning of beans of 132,000 tons.

Weekly Export Sales-1,000 tonsAs of:5/3/2018
ActualEstimates Last Week ActualEstimates Last Week
Source: Reuters


Brazilian farmers continue to be selling on weaker currencies. Brazilian farmers are also taking advantage of selling with the US/China trade deal meetings. Beans have been under technical pressure this week due to soybean meal falling. Wednesday was the first day since February that beans closed below $10 on continuous chart. Bean meal was sold to Philippines (largest buyer), Spain and Morocco.

Below is current US Drought monitor change from May 8 week to May 15.


Posted in Blog, Grain

How to Care for Laying Chickens

Check out these tips on how to care for laying chickens from chick to the laying stage.

  • When chicks are babies you will need a draft free pen with a heat lamp on at all times. The temperature should be around 92⁰F. When they have started to feather out you can reduce temperature by five degrees per week until they are six-weeks old.
  • Once the chicks are six-weeks old you can transfer them into the chicken coop.
  • Make sure to provide clean bedding such as wood shavings once a month.
  • One of the most important daily tasks will be to ensure they have access to feed and fresh water.
  • Provide a quality complete chicken feed made for growing birds through 20-weeks of age.
  • At 20-weeks they can transition from the grower feed to a quality layer feed.
  • Depending on the quantity of chickens you are raising, add more feeders and watering stations to ensure all chickens have access to eat and drink at the same time.
  • Once the chickens are laying, it is a good idea to add a free-choice feeder for oyster shells. This allows the birds to regulate how much they need.
  • If you choose to give your birds treats, make sure to research items that they can and cannot have, especially if it is something from the house or garden. Other go-to treats are grit, mealworms or cracked corn.
Posted in Animal Nutrition, Blog

Grain News – Optimism in the Market

What two weeks of somewhat good weather does!  The market has some optimism this week with the Chinese delegation arriving to Washington for tariff talks.  The hope is less tariffs in the agriculture sector and progress on moving forward.  Making grain move freely to China.  Spain continues to buy sorghum that was slapped with an import tax from China.

Corn planting jumped from 39% planted last week to 62% this week.  This is better than what was expected except for the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.  Iowa is only behind by 5% not a big deal.  South Dakota is by far the furthest behind at 40%.  Brazil’s safrinha crop estimates are coming down and the trade is watching.  South America farmers are reluctant to sell due to currency and crop size.

Soybean planting is well ahead of the 5-year average.  35% complete this year vs 26% on 5-year average.  Trade is really watching trade talks with China.

Wheat is really mixed in the last week.  Winter wheat good/excellent improved to 36% vs last year 15%.  The crop continues to run behind on at 45% headed vs 53% on average.  Spring wheat planting have made great strides to 58% vs 30% last week.

Make sure to put offers in and look forward into next spring and beyond.  We have many different options to help your operation profitable.  Our price builder corn in March is a $4.57 board and corn July 19 are $4.66.

Happy Tuesday!


Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain News – Quick Rundown on WASDA

  • World 18/19 bean carryout at 86.7mmt vs an estimated 90.52.
  • US 18/19 bean carryout at 415 million bushels vs an estimated 535 million bushels.
  • World 18/19 corn carryout at 159.2 mmt vs an estimated 186.35 mmt.
  • US 17/18 corn carryout 2.182 billion bushels and 1.682 billion bushels for 18/19.
  • 18/19 wheat production at 1.821 billion bushels with a carryout of 995 million bushels.
  • The state by state winter wheat production has Wisconsin production up 3.77 million bushels by increasing yield 5 bpa and acres up 40,000 acres. Record yields for IL, KY and MI while KS crop is bigger than some expected.
  • Overall the report was bullish beans, neutral to friendly corn and bearish wheat.


Posted in Blog, Grain