Agtech Action | Week of 02.15.20 - 02.21.20

A Presidential candidate face plants with farmers, a troubling article about farmers and suicide, and do Americans think about sustainability when they eat?

Wait a minute, is it Friday?!  Well yes it is!!  Another Agtech Action Friday ladies and gentlemen for your reading pleasure!  We have efforts to stop African Swine fever from speading, a Democratic candidate with an interesting opinion about farming, and an interesting survey of Americans and discussing sustainability in food.  I’ll let you dive in and enjoy!!

Food and the World:

US pork & soybean producers unite to keep ASF at bay – I cannot stress how important and under-reported African Swine Fever is; I am glad we are getting ahead of this because it could be DEVASTATING to the swine industry!

USDA’s long-term projections keep corn, soybean prices low

Bader Farms wins $265M judgment in Dicamba lawsuit against Bayer, BASF (Juries typically award punitive damages when they believe a defendant’s behavior is found to be especially harmful)

Larger soybean and cotton plantings due to trade deal? China is obliged to purchase $40B per year of US food, agriculture and seafood products through 2021.

EPA has approved two antibiotics to combat citrus greening—but it’s unclear if they help

Spring corn belt flooding concerns persist before planting season

Soy mania among US farmers a risk, even if China makes large purchases

Future of industrial hemp clouded by economic uncertainties

USDA raises export forecast for China by $4B

The largest corn crop ever is coming, USDA says

To meet goals, China will be ‘ramping up’ US ag purchases, says Perdue (Soybean to account for most of purchase, with cotton and pork also rising)

Sudan and South Sudan strengthen cooperation on animal health and livestock commercialization

Agriculture in the News:

Climate Fieldview terminates platform partnership agreement with Tillable

Bloomberg belittles knowledge and expertise of farmers – Someone is taking a page out of an unsuccessful campaign playbook

Inside one Iowa family’s anguish amid a rise in farmer suicides – This in my opinion is a severely under-reported mental health crisis!

Dairy Farmers of America strikes $425M deal for Dean Foods Assets

Mississippi River project approved, more corn and soybean export capacity expected

USDA releases previously hidden animal cruelty records

Bees may struggle in winds caused by global warming, study finds

Climate change responses benefit from a global food system approach

China wants food.  Brazil pays the price.


National Wheat Foundation opens its 2020 wheat yield contest

National Ag Day Essay contest winners announced

Ag on Instagram


Applications for our #EITFoodSeedbed pre-accelerator Program are now OPEN. This game changing customer discovery program allows you to test the market and work towards a validated business. Training, funding and mentorship available. Find out more at:

Interesting Reads:

Most Americans don’t discuss environmental impact of food (Hmmmm, you don’t say)

Will Michelob’s organic beer really transform American farmland?

Bayer ends digital farming agreement after Twitter backlash

Next generation of greenhouses may be fully solar powered

Coffee could play a role in controlling pests by creating sterile male fruit flies


People Company’s CA expansion to target SGMA opportunities

EIP hits $454M hard-cap as mitigation strategy achieves scale

Manna Tree investor interests’ triggers $15M beef investment

Trendlines Agrifood fund selects seed breeder Equinom for 1st investment

Omnivore, Accel, Mayfield back $5.5M Series A for greenhouse-based agtech startup Clover Ventures

NSW softwood privatization canceled after bushfires

NZ Super Fund expands Australian beef investment

Beyond Meat supply chain company secures $10M Series B

Romanian farmland interest reflects managers’ risk rebalancing – Brown & Co.

As I mentioned in prior newsletters, the final pitch event for the Manure Innovation Challenge will happen at the Animal Agtech Innovation Summit in San Francisco on March 16th.

The press keeps coming with the Manure Innovation challenge!

I have some exciting announcements for upcoming initiatives and more details on the ecosystem assessments in Africa with the FAO. Our team is forming for that important initiative and I cannot wait to reveal that to all!

If you would like to get involved or support the Yield Lab Institute initiatives, please email me at


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