Magazine article Business Perspectives

Sparks Companies, Inc

Magazine article Business Perspectives

Sparks Companies, Inc

Article excerpt

Sparks Companies, Inc. (SCI), is a world leader in broad-based agricultural and commodity market research, analysis, and consulting. Founded in 1977, the company now serves more than 750 firms and institutions worldwide. From its headquarters in Memphis, SCI spans the globe with a far-reaching network of services and clientele. SCI's professional depth and experience allow the company to provide a wide range of services related to the economic and management concerns of clients. Underpinning these services, SCI's principal strengths lie in an expansive information base and professional and experienced staff. SCI's employees are well-trained and seasoned researchers and consultants with extensive backgrounds in business and government, with most holding advanced degrees in agriculture or related fields. The SCI team has extensive experience in agribusiness and similar areas, as well as in agricultural policy decision-making.

The world's agricultural and food industry is expanding and remains in a constant state of change. Successful businesses and institutions must deal with rapidly shifting market conditions that are driven by international influences, technological innovations, policy shifts, weather conditions, emerging consumers, and fluctuating consumer preferences. To continue succeeding in this environment, businesses must have access to reliable market information and authoritative economic consulting services. It is SCI's economic expertise and diverse client base that combine to provide unique insights, risk management, and strategic planning for agribusinesses around the world. In its role as a world leader in comprehensive commodity, food industry, and agribusiness research and consulting, SCI offers several broad categories of services, including research and analysis, business consulting, education/training, and news and communications.

SCI's research offers a comprehensive package of well respected, timely, and highly detailed commodity market information. The focus is on U.S. and world acreage and crop production, supply and demand estimates, price outlooks, transportation and storage projections, weather forecasts, agricultural policy, farm programs, and long-term agribusiness trends. The scope of this work covers the following areas:

* All major grains, oilseeds and products, cotton and fibers;

* Livestock, meat, poultry, and dairy;

* Soft commodities (including sugar, corn sweeteners, cocoa, eggs, orange juice);

* Specialty vegetable oils (specifically, coconut and palm kernel oil);

* Transportation services;

* Weather services;

* SCI Morning Comments (a daily briefing of factors/ events important to commodity markets);

* Long-term forecasting (bi-annual reviews of the five-year world grain and oilseed outlooks);

* SCI Data Services (one of the most comprehensive agricultural databases available today);

* SCI Producer Services (SCI's on-farm consulting business devoted to assisting farmers in marketing crops through the development of a customized farm price risk management program) and MarginQuest (a strategic alliance between SCI and PIC USA offering pork producers innovative risk management services). …

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