Agribusiness facts

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Mon Jan 15 08:26:52 MST 2001

(From A.V. Krebs' "Between the Furrows Newsletter")


Acoording to USDA figures compiled by Daniel Wood, Christian Science Monitor:

*Nearly 20% of the world's food now comes from city-based farms, averaging
anywhere from one to 20 acres.

* The average distance between food in the field and the dining room where
it is eaten is 1,500 miles.

* Refrigerating, transporting, and storing this food causes an expenditure
of energy eight times greater than the value of the food itself.

* In terms of calories, it takes eight calories of energy to produce and
deliver one calorie of food 1,500 miles.

* Spinach and other green leafy vegetables can lose as much as 50% of their
nutrients in five days.

According to Business Week's annual survey:

* U.S. executive pay in 1999 continued to grow at an out-of-this-world
rate, the average CEO of a major corporation made $12.4 million in 1999, up
17% from the previous year or 475 times more than an average blue-collar
worker and six times the average CEO paycheck in 1990.

* American companies are paying CEOs better than anywhere else in the
world, not 10% or 20% more, but 1,000 percent more and then some.

* According to Towers Perrin's 1999 Worldwide Total Remuneration report,
German CEOs make 13 times what the average manufacturing employee makes and
in Japan, the CEO-to-worker pay ratio is just 11-to-1.

Preliminary data from Thomson Financial Securities Data reports that:

* Mergers and acquisitions worldwide surpassed $3.4 trillion in 2000 ekeing
out a 3.5% increase over 1999's total and producing, the eighth consecutive
record year for the continuing M&A expansion.

* With three (weekend) days to go before 2000 drew to a close, total volume
of M&A deals announced around the world reached $3.409 trillion, compared
with $3.293 trillion in 1999.

* In the U.S., announced mergers managed to rack up a total of $1.766
trillion, up 12.9% over 1999's total of $1.564 trillion. While the increase
reversed a 3% decline in U.S. merger volume the previous year, the total
number of announced U.S. deals fell to 10,658 from 11,042 --- the second
straight year in recent memory the number has dropped.

USDA figures show that:

* U.S. fruit production fell 10% in 1999, declining for the second
consecutive year.

* Between 1992 and 1997, the number of U.S. farms with land set aside for
orchards and vineyards declined by nearly 10,000, or 13.5%, to 106,069.

* The state with the largest loss was California, where nearly 2,300 farms
disappeared as the number of acres devoted to fruit production increased.

 * USDA has overestimated the amount of farm land that was developed
between 1992 and 1997 by 30% and blamed faulty software for the mistake. It
initially reported that nearly 16 million acres of farm land were converted
to development between 1992 and 1997 --- a rate of 3.2 million per year.
The correct figure is 11.2 million acres, a development rate of 2.2 million
acres  per year.

* Between 1982 and 1992, the annual conversion rate was 1.4 million  acres
a year.

* The U.S. had 98 million acres of developed land in 1997, about 6.6% of
the nation's non-federal land.

* About 25% of the non-federal land is farmed. More than half is in
rangeland or forests.

Public Campaign’s Author Blank reports that:

* Expected price tag for Bush-Cheney inauguration: $30 million.

* Portion coming from private contributions: 100%.

* Cost of a table at any of three candlelight dinners on January 18 that
President-elect George W. Bush and Vice President-elect Dick Cheney are
expected to visit: $25,000.

* Maximum contribution that the Bush-Cheney Presidential Inaugural
Committee is accepting from private donors: $100,000.

* Number of donors who gave a total of $100,000 or more to parties and
candidates in the 2000 elections awarded positions on George W. Bush's
Transition Advisory Teams: 14.

* Amount that Bush's Energy Department Secretary nominee, Sen. Spencer
Abraham (Rep.-Michigan), received from energy industry donors in his failed
2000 Senate race: $366,298.

* Rank of Abraham among all current senators in contributions accepted from
energy industry donors in the 2000 elections: 1.

* The number of industries that Bush's nominee for Attorney General, Sen.
John Ashcroft (Rep.-Missouri), ranks in the Senate top ten for
contributions in the 2000 elections: 42, many of which have anti-trust and
other matters pending before the Justice Department.


Readers of THE AGRIBUSINESS EXAMINER are reminded that past issues of the
newsletter can be found at the Corporate Agribusiness Research Project’s
web site on the Internet. The CARP web site features: THE  AGBIZ  TILLER,
THE AGRIBUSINESS EXAMINER and "Between the Furrows."


THE AGBIZ TILLER, the progeny of the one-time printed newsletter, now
becomes an on-line news feature of the Project. In-depth essays dealing
with  corporate agribusiness activities are posted here periodically.

In "Between the Furrows," besides a modern search engine, there is a wide
range of pages designed to inform and educate readers on the inner workings
of  corporate agribusiness. In addition to CARP's "Mission  Statement,"
"Overview"  and the Project director's "Publication Background," the viewer
will find a helpful "Fact  Miners" page which is an effort to assist the
reader in the necessary art of researching corporations; a page of
"Quotable Quotes" pertaining to agribusiness and corporate power; a
"Links" page which allow the reader to survey various useful public
interest, government and  corporate web sites; a "Feedback" page for reader
input, and  a page where readers can order  directly the editor's The
Corporate Reapers: The Book of  Agribusiness.

The CARP web site was designed and produced by ElectricArrow of Seattle,

Simply by clicking on either of the addresses below all the aforementioned
features and information are yours to enjoy, study, absorb and sow.

Louis Proyect
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