Moderate drought covers 30% of the contiguous United States, and represents the second worst drought in 20 years. With the majority of cattle pasture situated in the West, this year’s drought is seen having an outsized impact on the livestock industry.  
When drought occurs, ranchers must decide how best to manage their herds to avoid or curtail losses. Gro offers a range of tools to help with this.
Gro’s newly launched Supply Location Monitor application lets users understand the amount of bushels available for feed in a given region, the price they will have to pay for them, and how that competes with nearby facilities. The application is driven by Gro’s in-season Yield Forecast Models that provide a daily look at county-level corn, soybean, and winter wheat yields. The yield forecast models incorporate Gro’s Drought Index which can pinpoint down to the district level areas that are experiencing heightened levels of drought.
In Brown county, South Dakota, where the Gro Drought Index (GDI) currently reads 1.77, indicating moderate drought, Gro’s Supply Location Monitor shows the available bushels of corn within the designated area selected (Roscoe, SD). The tool, which takes into account basis levels in the region (both spot and new crop), also calculates the available bushels given the increase in price. For instance, paying 10 over the spot price of corn can yield 50 million bushels. 
Join Gro on Thursday, November 4, for a webinar titled “Planning Corn and Soy Supply” to garner a better understanding of this powerful application and how it can be customizable to your various needs. Register here.
Through the use of Gro’s Supply Location Monitor, one can assess the economics of buying, storing, and handling grain in each location across the US and then compare the pricing risk around different areas of interest. The monitor uses a user-specified center, radius, and crop to show and analyze competing facilities in the area of interest. 
The Gro Drought Index provides fully automated, high-resolution measurements of droughts worldwide. The GDI, which updates daily at the county level, measures drought severity on a scale from “0” or no drought to “5” or exceptional drought. 
Not only can drought cause the price of grain to rise, making it more expensive to feed, but In response to drought, producers can face critical decisions such as reducing herd sizes, sending cattle to feedlots, or purchasing feed (hay or grain). Using drought data can help guide this process.
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