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What to Know This Week: Winter Sting and Apps for Spring
While much of the nation's crop country is still mired in the worst winter in decades, farmers are starting to look toward spring. But new forecasts out this week show it may not be the warmest, driest spring, at least to start.
Though the cold has been hard on just about everything and everyone recently, the precipitation that's coming with it is welcome in the Plains, where the winter wheat crop's still fairly thirsty. But are these sharply lower temps doing more to hurt the wheat crop than the snow's helping it? See the latest winterkill outlook here.
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03The weather hasn't stopped the row-crop industry's largest event from kicking off in the shadow of the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, this week. The 2014 Commodity Classic has farmers gathered to discuss new technology, the latest crop outlooks, farm policy, and more.
Meanwhile, the markets have had a sharply higher week, with soybeans leading the charge based on some major export sales. South America's starting to see some weather worries, but it's exports that continue to drive the bus, with the trade hitting new highs for the year this week.
Speaking of South America, that region's harvest is well underway, with almost 1/3 of the Brazilian soybean crop out of the ground, according to Luis Vieira, Agriculture.com correspondent in southern Brazil. But, the crop's facing myriad challenges, including with infrastructure and logistics. See more from Luis
But, it's not all fundamentals. Right now, the U.S. Dollar has a greater influence on the grain trade than it ever has before, says one trader and Agriculture.com analyst this week. See the good, bad and ugly of the dollar's influence on the trade today.
The grains aren't the only markets having a big week; cattle futures continue their climb into record territory, with the cash trade beginning earlier in the week and futures responding higher. They're helping float hog futures, too.
While it may not seem possible if you're battling subzero temps this week, spring planting is just a few weeks off! Here's one way you can start getting ready now: There are a lot of cool mobile apps that can help get you ready for the season. Check them out here!
The Arctic Vortex is back, but it's not stopping farmers from starting to look ahead to spring.