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AGRICULTURAL NEWS OF THE WEEK FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF DALLAS Number 819 Wednesday, September 8, 1965 AGRICULTURAL PRICES The index of prices received by U. S. farmers declined 1% during the month ended August 15, 1965, to 250% of the 1910~14-average, points out the Statistical Reporting Service. Contributing to the decline were sharply lower prices for potatoes. Partially offsetting the decrease were price gains for wholesale milk, oranges, hogs, and eggs. The August index was 8% above a year ago. The parity index (which reflects prices paid for commodities and services, plus interest, taxes, and wage rates) as of August 15, 1965, was 321, or 1% below the previous month but nearly 3% above a year earlier. The parity ratio, at 78, was unchanged from mid-July but was 5% above a year earlier. FEDERAL CROP INSURANCE AT RECORD HIGH U. S. farmers have a record $580 million of Federal Crop Insurance for the 1965 crop, reports the U. S. De:r;:a.rtment of Agriculture. The insurance is a voluntary, self-help service which offers protection to farmers on crop investments against loss from all natural hazards to most of the 24 crops on which the insurance is available. In 1964 the Nation's farmers had over $543 million of Federal Crop Insurance, and the program paid out more than $30 million in claims made by over 60,000 farmers. LARGER TURKEY CROP The 1965 national turkey crop is expected to total 103.7 million birds, a figure that -rs-4% above last year~roduction, according to the SRS. The number of heavy white turkeys being raised is up 20%, and that of light breeds is 4% larger. On the other hand, the number of bronze and other heavy breeds is down 9%. Minnesota, the leading turkey-producing state this year, is expected to raise 15.9 million birds, followed by California, with 14.8 million; Iowa, with 8.2 million; Missouri, with 7.6 million; North Carolina, with 5.6 million; Wisconsin, with 5.4 million; and Texas, with 5.2 million. FALL GARDENS FOR VEGETABLES AND EXERCISE Good fresh vegetables, exercise, and fresh air can be obtained from the same project, a fall garden, says H. T. Blackhurst, Professor of Horticulture at Texas A&M University. Growth of most vegetables is not slowed by autumn's cooler temperatures. With proper planning, gardeners can produce a number of vegetables until the first heavy frost. RECORD WORLD RICE CROP World rice production reached an all-time high of 168.4 million tons of rough rice in 1964-65 (August-July), reports the Foreign Agricultural Service. The outturn compares with the previous peak of 164.2 million tons in 1963-64 and 151.9 million tons in 1962-63. The 1964-65 season was marked by record acreages and peak harvests in a large number of countries all over the world. Rice acreages increased on all of the continents, and for the second successive year, weather was generally favorable for production. In addition, wider acceptance and use of improved cultivation methods in many countries, including some large areas of Asia, are resulting in increasingly higher yields. L I V E S T0 CK The Fort Worth cattle supply for the week ended Thursday, September 2, is placed at 5,4o0'1iead, reflecting decreases of 7~om the preceding week and 4% from the corresponding 1964 period, points out the Consumer and Marketing Service. Slaugh· ter steers sold at prices which were steady to 25¢ per cwt. lower than the previous Thursday's close. High-Good to mostly Choice 990- to 1,110-lb. slaughter steers brought $26.10 to $26.50 per cwt., and Utility and Commercial cows cleared at $13.60 to $16.70. Demand for feeder cattle was fairly broad, and quotations for steer yearlings were steady. Mixed Good and Choice 500- to 685-lb. yearling steers were quoted at $23.80 to $24.80 per cwt. Calf receipts totaled an estimated 1,900, or 150 more than a week earlier and 350 abc;ve-last year. Slaughter calf prices were mostly steady with the preceding week's close. Quotations for Good grades of killing calves weighing up to 550 lbs. were $21 to $23 per cwt., and those for Good 300- to 500-lb. stocker steer calves ranged from $21.50 to $25.60. Hog offerings were approximately 900, compared with 625 a week ago and 1,025 in the corresponding period last year. Thursday quotations for barrows and gilts were $1 to $1.75 per cwt. lower than a week earlier. The bulk of the 4-day supply of mixed lots of U. S. No. 1 through No. 3 Grades of 190- to 265-lb. butchers sold at $23 to $24 per cwt. Sheep~ lamb marketings totaled about 2,100, a figure that is 30% smaller than in the previous week and 19% below a year earlier. Prices for all lambs and yearlings declined 50¢ to $1 per cwt. on Monday and then held steady the remainder of the trading period. The bulk of the Good and Choice 77- to 82-lb. shorn slaughter lambs with No. 1 through No. 3 pelts cleared at $21 to $22 per cwt. POULTRY For the week ended Friday, September 3, commercial broiler markets opened stronger in south Teias and about steady in east Texas, according to the State Department of Agriculture. Markets in both areas were· generally unstable throughout the trading period, and the undertone was highly unsettled at Friday's close. The closing price in south Texas was 15.5¢ per lb., and quotations in east Texas were 14.5¢ to 14.9¢. During the corresponding 1964 period, closing quotes were 15.5¢ per lb. in south Texas and 14¢ to 15.2¢ in east Texas. No Texas commercial broiler market report was available for Monday, September 6, because of the Labor Day holiday. BROILER CHICK PLACEMENTS Percent change from Previous Comparable week week, 1964 Area Week ended August 28, 1965 Texas •••••• Louisiana •. 2,660,000 612,000 -3 14 23 states •• 43,636 2 000 -1 13 3 15