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AFAC conference in Red Deer

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Speakers at the Alberta Farm Animal Care (AFAC) annual conference Mar. 21-22 in Red Deer include Charlie Arnot of the U.S.-based Centre for Food Integrity, Kansas State University’s Glynn Tonsor on consumer expectations and their economic impact and Gene Gregory of United Egg Producers on opportunities through its recent partnership with the Humane Society of the United States. The conference will also highlight the EU phase-out of sow stalls and the implications for producers. www.afac.ab.ca/lcc.

Russia raises grain export forecast

moscow / reuters Russia’s government sees no need for grain export restrictions in April and has its raised grain export forecast for 2011-12 by 12.5 per cent.

“Given a revised harvest figure of 93.9 million tonnes… the forecast for grain exports in the 2011-12 crop year has been raised to 27 million tonnes,” said Viktor Zubkov, the deputy prime minister in charge of agriculture.

Russia has exported 19.6 million tonnes of grain since the start of this year, but the government says the country can fully meet domestic grain demand.

World wheat prices have risen in the past week on speculation a duty would soon be imposed and on concerns hard frosts would damage Black Sea crops.

The government promised to regulate exports via duties after lifting a ban on grain exports imposed in the wake of 2010’s catastrophic drought. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said in October that exports would be no more than 25 million tonnes.

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