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Added January 17, 2011
The organic grain market has been very stable compared to non-organic with a limited response to the increase in prices of non-organic corn and soybean, with organic corn at $7.10 and organic soybeans at $17.26 per bushel. With non-organic corn at $6 per bushel and soybean at $14.15 the price differential between organic and non-organic is negligible and is causing organic grain growers to question the economics of growing organic with all its increased costs, recordkeeping and risk. Interestingly, non-organic soybean meal is trading at $387 per ton and organic soybean meal is priced at $781 per ton, more than double. Very good demand for feed grade grains has been reported by USDA Ag Market News, with interest in feed grade barley, flax, and oats, but little interest if food grade grains.
In so far as non-organic prices determine the organic price, it is anticipated that the price of organic feed will rise, especially as the market for non-organic corn and soybeans tightens with increased demand for ethanol, a rising price of oil, and a reliance on world trade which is subject to the volatility in supply caused by natural disaster. At this time there is insufficient data available to determine what effect these price fluctuations will have on the price for 12, 16 and 18 per cent crude protein grain but it is likely they will rise as demand increases with processors asking for increased supply of milk and producers looking for more feed.