Ag Chat with Bob Bosold - September 5

ALTOONA, Wis. (WEAU)- Milk prices weren't the only commodity prices that went up across the state in July. Crop prices were higher as well. Corn prices averaged $3.98 a bushel in July-up 9 cents from June and 55 cents more than a year ago. Soybeans brought $8.31 a bushel for the month-also 9 cents better than June and 99 cents more than last July. July oat prices did fall 44 cents from June-down to $3.07 a bushel. But that was 46 cents more than last year. Hay prices were mixed in July. The all hay price was $155 a ton-down $8 from June but $40 more than last year while alfalfa averaged $167 a ton in July--$52 less than the June price but $40 more than a year ago.

Soybeans field / Photo: Mlabar / Wikipedia / (MGN)

It now looks like Argentina is the next country to fill the void in soybean sales to China since U.S. exports have pretty much dried up. Multiple groups from Argentina are in China this month to promote their soybeans and related products, especially soybean meal. After a drought last year, Argentina's soybean crop was 48% larger for this marketing year at just over 2 billion bushels. China is already the biggest buyers of Argentina's soybeans but they figure they can sell more to the Chinese this year not only because of current trade conflicts but also because Argentina's currency has collapsed making their beans much cheaper than U.S. soybeans.

Meanwhile Chinese officials continue to say they don't want to escalate a trade war with the U.S. and they are willing to sit down for more talks. A spokesman for China's Commerce ministry said as a sign of good faith, they will hold off on imposing retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods even though the U.S. recently added more Chinese goods to the tariffs list. The two sides haven't talked trade since July but there are indications of face to face talks later this month.

But the Chinese have taken some action against the U.S. over the latest round of tariffs. They've gone to the World Trade Organization to complain. The Chinese contend that the U.S. agreed to a deal at the G-20 summit earlier this summer not to impose anymore tariffs but U.S. officials disagree. The two sides now have 60 days to settle the issue or it could go to a WTO Dispute Panel to be resolved.