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FAPRI baseline update shows farm prices depend on recovery in general economy

Uncertainty in the general economy continues to drive the agricultural market outlook in a mid-year baseline from the University of Missouri Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute.

"For most U.S. crops, market prices have declined from last year's peaks but remain well above pre-2007 levels," said Pat Westhoff, senior economist and co-director of FAPRI.

"On the livestock side, the baseline shows recovery in 2010 for meat and dairy prices but depends on general economic recovery and continued reduction of supplies," said Scott Brown, FAPRI livestock economist.

"Lower petroleum prices have reduced production costs," Westhoff said. Those lower prices also reduce demand for biofuel. This lowers demand for corn and soybeans, major sources of those fuels.

The mid-August FAPRI baseline is a limited updating of the 10-year baseline released in March 2009. The agricultural commodities outlook changed markedly since the completion of the FAPRI long-term baseline, Westhoff said.

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