National Editor Tom Karst
National Editor Tom Karst

One of the annoying things about Twitter is the occasional direct message from a follower stating "Hey this user is saying really bad rumors about you" or "This video with you in it had me dying lol."

I suspect that the tweets are bogus or hacked and the links would take me to a website laden with computer viruses too numerous to mention. That hunch wavered a bit the other day after reading one comment from a reader about me in an online feedback form. LOL.


Some quick hits this morning:

Check out the new USDA ERS study on farm labor. Called "The Potential Impact of Changes in Immigration Policy on U.S. Agriculture and the Market for Hired Farm Labor: A Simulation Analysis," the report is friendly to the ag community's plea for an  expanded guest worker program. From the report:


The expanded employment of temporary nonimmigrant agricultural workers would lead to a
longrun relative increase in agricultural output and exports. The increases are generally larger
in labor-intensive sectors, such as fruits, tree nuts, vegetables, and nursery products. By year 15 of the increased farm labor supply scenario, these four sectors experience a 1.1- to 2.0-percent increase in output and a 1.7- to 3.2-percent increase in exports, relative to the base forecast.

By contrast, a large reduction in the number of unauthorized workers in all sectors of the U.S. economy would lead to a longrun reduction in output and exports in both agriculture and the broader economy, relative to forecasted levels with no policy-induced change in unauthorized labor supply. Fruits, tree nuts, vegetables, and nursery production are again among the most affected sectors, with longrun relative declines from 2.0 to 5.4 percent in output and from 2.5 to 9.3 percent in exports, depending on the modeling assumptions.


Check out the recent huge USDA solicitation for fresh tomato purchases. The USDA wanted to buy 230,000 plus 25-pound cartons of fresh tomatoes for June delivery. It will be interesting to see the purchase detail and if that requested volume will be supported by the trade.

Bad news for Southern Hemisphere fruit exporters this morning. Pipfruit New Zealand issued a sobering  update on braebrun exports, showing a 27% reduction compared with last year. The high NZ dollar and smaller fruit size are contributing factors in the decline, officials said.

Also check out the recently issued USDA FAS report on New Zealand deciduous.

In Australia, navel growers are discouraged about the sluggish pricing at the start of the season, according to this report from ABC.

You will find this USDA FAS report on Japan's vending machine trends fascinating.


Fresh Talk hotlinks....