The September crop report was once again bearish as USDA raised production estimates for corn and soybeans, and futures prices dipped accordingly yesterday after the release. There is a caveat though, according to USDA’s Gary Crawford.
“Tuesday’s crop report data was collected well before Irma and was either finished before Harvey hit Texas or the data collection was impacted by Harvey, so the numbers being forecast are subject to change,” he explained. “In fact, USDA will be going out to recheck quite a bit of harvested acreage information in areas hit by those storms.”
USDA did raise production forecasts for corn, soybeans and cotton. The agency has the corn crop at 14.2 billion bushels, up 32 million from the August report but down six percent from last season. Use is expected down and supplies up, so analysts chopped a dime off the price forecast to $3.20 for corn.
Based on conditions as of September 1, yields are expected to average 169.9 bushels per acre, up 0.4 bushel from the August forecast but down 4.7 bushels from 2016. If realized, this will be the third highest yield and production on record for the United States. Area harvested for grain is forecast at 83.5 million acres, unchanged from the August forecast but down 4 percent from 2016.
Soybeans went up one percent from August to the record 4.43 billion bushels. That’s up three percent from a year ago and they chopped a dime off there too, down to $9.20 a bushel of soybeans. It was $9.50 this past season.
Based on September 1 conditions, yields are expected to average 49.9 bushels per acre, up 0.5 bushel from last month but down 2.2 bushels from last year. Area for harvest in the United States is forecast at a record high 88.7 million acres, unchanged from August but up 7 percent from 2016.
Factoring in effects of hurricanes Harvey and Irma could change the picture though.
In Indiana, although mostly dry conditions persisted through most of August, the cooler temperatures kept soybeans in good shape for the upcoming harvest, which is forecasted to have record high production, according to Greg Matli, State Statistician for the USDA, NASS, Indiana Field Office.
“What would have been a phenomenal year for corn ten years ago now seems average. Circumstances haven’t lined up this year like they did in 2013 and 2014. And, corn condition ratings this year are below last year,” Matli said.
Indiana’s corn yield is forecast at 171 bushels per acre, down 2 bushels from 2016 and from the August forecast. Total production is forecast at 918 million bushels, down 3 percent from a year ago.
Soybean yield in Indiana is forecast at 56 bushels per acre, down 1.5 bushels from last year’s record high yield, but up 1 bushel from last month. Total production is forecast at 330 million bushels, up 2 percent from last year and also a new record for the State.