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AGRICULTURAL NEWS OF THE WEEK FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF DALLAS umber ~ * ~ oJ * -J· * * l~92 Wednesday, June 3, 1959 * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *-/( LOOK TO THE MILKY WAY This t heme highlights the U. s. Department of Agriculture's support of June Dairy Month. The Secretary of Agriculture has focused attention on June Dairy Month by commending the American dairy industry for its farsighted ~chandising program. He points out that "the dairy industry was among the first of the food industries to recognize the need for broad and intensive merchandising and promotion of agricultural products. June Dairy Month spearheads an aggressive well-rounded promotion campaign to aid distribution of milk and milk products • 11 ' * * * * ******************************** * ** * * * * * * * * */( * ** E R 0 S I 0 N CONDITIONS I N GREAT P L A I NS Reports from 280 counties in the Great Plains show that, as of May!, a to tal of approximately 2.7 million~ of land had been damaged by wind, according to the USDA. The figure is nearly 900,000 acres more than on April 1 and compares with 3.4 million acres damaged on May 1 last year. More than 90% of the land reported damaged this season was cropland, primarily in Texas, Montana, and North Dakota. W IND AGR I CUL T UR AL P R I CE S The index of prices received by Q. ~· farmers ~ slightly during the mon th ended May 15 to 245% of the 1910-14 average, reports the Agricultural Marketing Service. Sharply higher prices for potatoes, coupled with higher prices for oranges, new-crop cantaloupes and watermelons, and for cattle were primarily respons ible for the advance. Partially offsetting the rise were seasonally lower prices fo r milk and sharply lower prices for eggs, tomatoes, and onions. The index was approximately 4% below the year-earlier level. The parity index (which reflects prices paid for commodities and services, plus interest, taxes, and wage rates) at 299 on May 15 was unchanged from the record high of the preceding ~· A fractional decline in the production goods component was offset by a like increase in the family living portion. The index was about 1% h i gher than in May 1958. The parity ratio remained at 82 - down 6% from a year ago. SOIL CONSERVATION COMMEMORATIVE STAMP The USDA recently announced that a 4-cent postage stamp saluting progress in soil conservation in this country will be issued August 26 by the Post Office Department . The Nation's first soil conservation stamp portrays a modern farmland set ting signifying that conservation farming brings beauty as well as bounty to ru ral living . USDA officials state that the "issuance of the stamp is a tribute to farmers and r anchers, their local soil conservation districts and to the professional conservat ionists and other agricultural workers who have helped make the Uni ted States a world leader in soil conservation. 11 P 0 UL T RY According to the Texas Department of Agriculture, prices in the State's commercial broiler markets held unchanged throughout the trading week ended Friday, May 29. However, market conditions became slightly uncertain at the close, follo, iug declines in other broiler-producing states. Closing prices were 16¢ per lb. i south Texas and 15¢ in east Texas, although 57% of the sales in the latter area were at undetermined prices. During the corresponding period in 1958, closing prices were: South Texas, 21¢, and east Texas, 20~¢ to 21¢, mostly 21¢. On Monday, June !, commercial broiler markets were barely steady in south Texas and unchanged in east Texas. Prices in both areas were the same as the previous Friday's close; however, 53% of the sales in east Texas were at undetermined pr ices. 1- BROILER CHICK PLACEMENTS Area Week ended May 23, 1959 Percentage change from Previous Comparable week week, 1958 Texas •••••• Louisiana •• 2,097,000 394,000 4 -30 -1 -19 22 states •. 33 828 000 -1 -7 L I VE S T 0 C K The cattle ~ at Fort Worth during the week ended Thursday, May 28, totaled 7,400 head, reflecting declines of 6% from the preceding week and 20% from the corresponding period in 1958, reports the AMS. Trading on slaughter steers and heifers was uneven, and prices were mostly steady with those in the latter part of the previous week. Trading on most stockers and feeders was active, and prices generally were fully steady, Good and a few Choice 750- to 1,150-lb. slaughter steers were quoted at $28 to $29 per cwt.; most Commercial cows, $19 to $19.50; and Medium and Good 550- to 650-lb. stocker and feeder steers, $24 to $30. Calf receipts are placed at 2,200, or 500 more than both a week earlier and a year ago. Trading on slaughter calves was active the fore part of the week but was slow the last 2 days. Prices of Good and Choice grades were steady, while those for other grades were uneven. Good and Choice grades of killing calves brough $28 to $30, and stocker and feeder steer calves sold at $30 to $36.SO. The 3,200 hog supply compared with 3,000 in the previous week and 2,500 a year earlier. Prices of barrows and gilts were about steady with those in the latter part of the preceding week. Most mixed U. s. No. 1 through No. 3 Grades of slaughter hogs cleared at $16.25 to $16.75. Sheep and lamb marketings were an estimated 37,700, which was 2,100 below the week-earlier level and 800 fewer than a year ago. Trading was very uneven, with demand narrow for all slaughter classes except spring lambs. Prices ranged from $1 higher to $3 lower than in the preceding week. Most Good and Choice 70- to 90-1 b. slaughter spring lambs sold at $22 to $2L~. J. z. Rowe Agricultural Economist