News May 2020 Commodity Corner

May 2020 Commodity Corner

May 2020 Commodity Corner
May 6, 2020 |


Demand for local fruit and vegetables is up across the state as spring crops are beginning to mature. Strawberry and peach crops are less than ideal due to a mild, wet winter.

-Hunter McBrayer, executive director


The state veterinarian’s office received the first shipment of Allflex 840 EID tags from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. These tags are free to producers so long as they use them in replacement animals. Any producer wishing to utilize these tags should contact the state veterinarian’s office at (334) 240-7255.

-Brady Ragland, division director

Hay & Forage

While demand for hay is high, many cattle-raising customers have been impacted by declining cattle prices. Rain from recent storms was well received ­— as long as it wasn’t accompanied by damaging hail, wind or tornadoes. 

-Brady Ragland, division director


Several equine events are postponed or canceled due to COVID-19. However, enthusiasts from across the state have been creative and hosted virtual barrel races and trail rides.

-Brady Ragland, division director


The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated the new-construction market, which impacts lumber demand, prices and capacity. Housing starts data for March marks the largest month-over-month percentage decrease in starts since March 1984. However, southern yellow pine (SYP) lumber prices made a surprising comeback in mid-April. Forest2Market’s composite SYP lumber price for the week ending April 17 was $358/MBF, a 5.9% increase from the previous week’s price of $338/MBF but a 10.7% decrease from the same week in 2019. Learn more at

-William Green, division director

Greenhouse, Nursery & Sod 

Retail garden centers continue to see increased demand for horticultural items by homeowners. Retail centers continue to operate under state-issued social distancing guidelines.

-Hunter McBrayer, division director


The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol is now on the Textile Exchange’s list of preferred fibers and materials. The Trust Protocol is one of 36 fibers and materials that over 170 participating brands and retailers can select as part of Textile Exchange’s Material Change Index program.

-Carla Hornady, division director

Meat Goat & Sheep

Local prices for lamb and goats have held steady. However, Alabama should prepare for a fall in prices as seen in Western states during the pandemic.

-Brady Ragland, division director


Alabama’s poultry industry remains strong during the current pandemic. Poultry processors are running at a reduced capacity, but have not had to shut down. Growers have been impacted by slowing of the production cycle but are diligently working to supply shoppers with fresh product. 

-Russ Durrance, division director


Plans are moving forward for the Southern Peanut Growers Conference July 16-18 at Edgewater Golf & Beach Resort in Panama City Beach, Florida. For registration and hotel information, visit Questions? Call the Alabama Peanut Producers Association office at (334) 792-6482.

-Jacob Davis, executive director

Bee & Honey 

Spring build-up is well underway. Beekeepers indicate low to normal colony loss after the winter. Queens are breeding and laying brood.

-Hunter McBrayer, division director

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