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What will USDA say Thursday?

Jeff Caldwell 06/27/2011 @ 2:40pm Multimedia Editor for Agriculture.com and Successful Farming magazine.

In a time when USDA reports have a big effect on the grain markets, this week's June Acreage report may have the biggest.

So, what will Thursday's report tell us? At this stage, it looks like the big word is more. Projection estimates from the USDA-NASS Iowa Field office show projected acres higher for corn, soybeans, wheat and cotton all higher than estimates from last year. All but the cotton number, at 12.57 million acres, is higher than the 2009-2010 crop year.

Estimated acreage numbers for Thursday's report, according to USDA-NASS, are:

  • Corn: 90.7 million acres
  • Soybeans: 76.6 million acres
  • Wheat: 57.7 million acres
  • Cotton: 12.57 million acres

The estimates are based on data collected during personal interviews with farmers between May 29 and June 15. Since USDA has been tracking acreage numbers, the highest percentage of change in acres between the June and October reports has been 1.5%, or 1.3 million acres, which was the case in the flood year of 2008.

But, will this year's numbers break that record? Judging by what farmers and Agriculture.com Marketing Talk members have seen around the countryside, there may be the acres planted out there, but how those acres add up to the crop is still very much in doubt.

"Looking out my back window I don't think there will be a big corn crop either. However, I don't think Missouri, Oklahoma Texas or Kansas ever had much to do with the size of the corn crop," says Marketing Talk member and southwest Kansas farmer peaceman. "It is like a desert here. When you go south it get worse and worse.  Nice thing is the humidity is so low it cools off in the evening and stays nice until noon."

Even though things look fairly sorry in his neck of the woods, Marketing Talk member Pupdaddy says he thinks the crops will bounce back. But, at what cost?

"I don't think I've ever seen a worse looking crop overall in my life. Soybeans that obviously have been planted for a month or better are yellow...schoolbus yellow...ugly manganese and nitrogen deficient yellow. They should come out of it, but at what cost to yield?" he says. "Corn is everywhere from 8 inches tall to less than waist high...and that's the fields that got planted and weren't abandoned. And I saw plenty of them."


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