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In Brief… – for Mar. 12, 2009

Winding down: The Net Income Stabilization Fund (NISA) is in the final stages of winding down. All accounts will be closed as of March 31, its administrators say. NISA came to an end and began winding down accounts in March 2004. Participants were given the option to withdraw their NISA balance in one lump sum or in annual payments for up to five years. If you have not received your remaining funds please contact the administration at 1-866-367-8506.

Clarification on Glenn wheat: Glenn, a new North Dakota milling wheat recently recommended for registration yielded almost as much as the highest-yielding check variety, Unity, during three years of western Canadian trials. However, Glenn outyielded the average of all the checks by eight and six per cent, respectively in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. A story in last week’s Manitoba Co-operator said the variety’s yields averaged less than mean of the checks.

Clarification: The Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) says as of January 2009 it cost around $9 million a year to protect farmers against payment defaults by licensed grain companies. Posting security costs licensed elevators and grain buyers around $7.6 million annually and it costs the CGC around $1.4 million to administer the program. The CGC says most of those costs get passed back to farmers. In 2007, the total cost of security was around $5 million, as reported last week in a story. Security costs have risen since.

Credit crisis spreads: U. S. farmers are falling behind on the loans, leases and lines of credit they use to finance their tractors, harvesters and other equipment at an accelerating rate, a commercial lending analyst says. PayNet Inc., which collects real-time loan information from more than 200 leading U. S. Capex lenders, said severe delinquencies for farmers – those with accounts behind 91 days or more – jumped 82 per cent year over year in January to 1.20 per cent. Overall, severe delinquencies in all 23 sectors PayNet tracks rose 30 per cent.

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