The rest of the economy may fuss about export deficits or celebrate small successes.Farm exports, though, are basking in the big win: the 36th year of surpluses and a 10percent increase in international sales.A U.S. Department of Agriculture estimate puts the ag export dollar value at $60billion in 1996, more than double since 1985.”We are the world’s largest exporter of farm products,” said Bill Mizelle, aneconomist with the University of Georgia Extension Service. “We account for 23percent of all agricultural trade in the world.”Agriculture depends on those export dollars for 23 percent of its gross cash receipts.”For the overall economy, exports account for 11 percent of sales,” Mizellesaid. “So agriculture is twice as dependent on exports as the rest of theeconomy.”The No. 1 buyer is Japan, which spent $10 billion on U.S. farm products last year.Sales broke records in other Asian markets, including Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan and China.In fact, China became agriculture’s biggest growth market, Mizelle said. Sales leaped175 percent to $2.4 billion.”We are the most competitive nation in the world in agricultural products,”Mizelle said. “We export things we’re good at (like cotton, peanuts and grains). Andwe bring in coffee, bananas and other items.”Many of our farm imports are either products we don’t grow or they’re grown whenwe’re not in season,” he said. “Trade helps improve the standard of living ofthe overall population. As incomes increase, people can buy even more.”The overall picture is positive. But markets for some crops fluctuate. The EconomicResearch Service figures Florida’s fresh winter vegetable market dropped from 57 percentin 1991-92 to 36 percent a year ago.”>Imports of horticultural products from Mexico are certainly up,” Mizellesaid. “But it’s not directly related to any increased production for exports (onMexico’s part).”When the peso was devalued, the Mexican domestic economy collapsed, so consumerdemand was reduced,” he said. “So our products, which normally would have goneto them, didn’t get sold. And their products, which would have been sold there, wereshipped to us.”We’ve had problems with spring freezes, too,” he said. “So Mexico hastaken advantage of our market, which added insult to injury for Florida.”Georgia agriculture depends on the export market, too. Although they don’t have exactfigures, Extension economists said many Georgia farm products are streaming out of theports of Savannah and Mobile.Extension economist Don Shurley said Georgia’s giant cotton crop goes worldwide. Lastyear Georgia grew 2 million bales, 10 percent of the U.S. crop.”Nationally we exported 9.4 million bales of the ’94 crop,”Shurley said.”That was 48 percent of the crop. This year, USDA’s latest projections are that ourexports will be 7.4 million bales. That’s down 2 million bales from last year. But it’sstill 41 percent of our total crop.”The dip in sales is attributed to a rise in world production, including in China, whichlowered imports of U.S. cotton.”Many people expect export figures for cotton to be higher than the USDA’sestimate,” Shurley said. “China has been a buyer in recent weeks. We’ve gotcommitments for almost 8 million bales, so it’s possible we’ll do better than thatestimate.”George Shumaker, an Extension economist in grains, said wheat exports for the ’95 cropare strong. He predicts they’ll stay strong for the ’96 crop. Soybean exports are strong,too, with estimates slightly up from last year.”What’s surprising is currently soybeans are worth about $1.75 a bushel more thanthey were the previous year,” Shumaker said. “So even at higher prices, we’restill competitive.Corn exports were up “just a little bit from ’94,” Shumaker said.”Again, we’re selling more bushels at much higher prices, which is extremelypositive.”
Despite the hold up, Mourinho’s announcement is expected imminently, although these delays could potentially carry into Euro 2016, and affect Mourinho’s transfer dealings.Van Gaal’s exit was formally announced earlier this week, confirming what many believed to be a long-held formality. The Dutchman was sacked despite winning the FA Cup last weekend, as United beat Crystal Palace after extra time.Assistant manager Ryan Giggs is reportedly set to exit the club, ending his long affiliation with United, amid reports that he is unsatisfied that he was not offered the manager’s role himself.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Jose Mourinho’s move to Manchester United is being held up due to complications over image rights, according to top sports lawyer Jake Cohen.Cohen announced on his Twitter feed yesterday morning that Mourinho’s entrance at Old Trafford as Louis Van Gaal’s replacement may not be as smooth as some United fans would hope – even though the issues aren’t believed to be serious enough to scupper the deal completely.He revealed that a delay has occurred due to the fact that former club Chelsea still own the trademark for the Portuguese boss’ real name, adding that his image rights are worth millions and that he was ill-advised during his time in London.