U.S. Agriculture Ends Calendar Year 2005 With $3.5 Billion Trade Surplus

Updates the quantity and value of U.S. farm exports and imports, plus price trends. Keeps readers abreast of how U.S. agricultural trade stacks up in a global market.

U.S. agricultural exports fell by about 9 percent from November to December, while

imports rose by about 3 percent. Calendar year 2005 exports, at $63 billion, are $1.6

billion higher than 2004. Imports are $5.3 billion higher at $59.3 billion. While still

maintaining a trade surplus, that surplus has shrunk from $7.4 billion in 2004 to $3.7

billion for 2005.

Gains in 2005 export values of fruits, nuts, red meat, and poultry meat more than offset

declines in wheat, corn, cotton, and soybeans. Lower prices for soybeans and cotton

dropped values as the volume of soybeans rose about 2 percent and cotton shipments

rose nearly 18 percent in 2005. China continued to be the largest market for cotton and

soybeans in December. On the import side, most of the 2005 increase comes from

beverages (coffee, malt beverages, juices, and wine), fruits, nuts, and dairy products.