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Corn harvest progress falls within trade guesses

Agriculture.com Staff 10/01/2007 @ 2:57pm

U.S. farmers have whittled through 29% of the country's soybean crop, while 31% of the nation's corn crop has been harvested. The latter figure, as released in Monday's USDA-NASS Crop Progress report, falls toward the lower end of the trade estimate for corn harvest progress.

The corn harvest progress as of Sunday continues on an accelerated pace, as this year's harvest is 11% ahead of the previous five-year average pace of 20% by this week. Monday's USDA numbers show the crop's quality unchanged in the last week, as 63% of the country's corn is rated in good-to-excellent condition again this week. This week's corn harvest progress was tabbed at between 30% and 35% by market-watchers Monday morning, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

Soybean harvest is also ahead of the average pace, but progress is closer to average: Twenty-nine percent this year versus the previous five-year average of 24%. Little change in overall soybean conditions was noted in the past week, as 57% of the crop is in good-to-excellent shape, compared to 58% one week ago.

Farmers are reporting good crop conditions, as Monday's USDA report indicates. But, harvest progress is more variable, according to one Missouri farmer.

"The corn is good, but we haven't started on beans yet," says Shane Newbrough of Moberly, Missouri. "We're still working on the corn." According to Monday's Crop Progress report, 53% of Missouri's corn crop and 35% of the state's soybeans are rated good-to-excellent condition.

But, harvest on both corn and soybeans is moving along well further north, at least according to Dustin McGinniss of Clinton, Wisconsin. "The beans are good, and the corn is running out great," he says. Fifty-eight percent of Wisconsin's soybeans and 51% of the state's corn are in good-to-excellent condition.

Looking ahead, the weather in general should allow considerable harvest progress in the coming week, according to Freese-Notis Weather, Inc. That is, once parts of the Corn Belt has a chance to dry out from rain over the weekend.

"Weekend rainfall in the western Corn Belt was highly variable, with an area from southeastern Nebraska through central Iowa getting little or nothing, while there was a narrow area of locally heavy rains from northeastern Nebraska through northwestern Iowa and southeastern Minnesota," according to Freese-Notis on Monday. "We've got some areas in the northwestern Corn Belt that are awfully wet right now, but I still believe that the weather pattern here in the first half of October is one where lots of harvesting gets done all across the Midwest."

U.S. farmers have whittled through 29% of the country's soybean crop, while 31% of the nation's corn crop has been harvested. The latter figure, as released in Monday's USDA-NASS Crop Progress report, falls toward the lower end of the trade estimate for corn harvest progress.

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