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Harvest Almost Finished Just in Time as Winter Weather Blasts Midwest

Growers are 94% finished with both the corn and soybean harvests, the USDA said.

The U.S. crops harvests were all but wrapped up this week, just in the nick of time as severe weather hammers the Midwest. 

Up from 90% a week earlier but just behind the prior five-year average of 96%, 94% of the corn crop is in the bin, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a report today.

Soybeans also are 94% harvested as of Sunday, up from 91% seven days earlier, but behind the average of 98%, according to the government. 

In Iowa, 96% of corn is harvested and 98% of soybeans are collected, while in Illinois, the corn and soybean harvests are complete. Iowa and Illinois are the biggest producers of both crops. While producers in the ‘I’ states – Indiana corn and soybeans are both 95% harvested – are pretty much done with the harvest, growers in other areas are well behind the normal pace for this time of year. 


North Dakota farmers are 80% finished collecting their corn, behind the five-year average of 93%, and 90% finished with soybeans vs. 99%. In Missouri, only 85% of soybeans are in the bin as of Sunday, behind the average of 95%, though the entire corn crop is harvested, the USDA said. 


Winter wheat planting also is almost finished with 95% in the ground, though that’s just behind the prior five-year average of 99%. Kansas producers are 96% finished sowing their crops while seeding in Oklahoma is 95% complete, according to the government. About 86% of the total winter-wheat crop is emerged, behind the average of 92% for this time of year. 

About 55% of the crop is rated good or excellent, just ahead of 50% during the same week last year, while only 13% is poor or very poor, little changed from 2017. 

The U.S. sorghum harvest is 89% complete, behind the average of 94%, but up from 80% a week earlier, the USDA said. 

Producers have faced adverse weather conditions with snow, rain, and ice hindering the last of the corn and soybean harvest in parts of the Corn Belt in the past week. Parts of Nebraska, Iowa, and Illinois all got hit by a major winter storm over the weekend, according to the National Weather Service, meaning what’s left in fields likely will remain there for a while as temperatures aren’t expected to warm up much in at least the next seven days.

As much as 8 inches fell in parts of the Midwest – more in some isolated spots – in the past 24 hours, but that will only impact the tail end of the corn and soybean harvest, Commodity Weather Group said in a report on Monday. Some parts of the Delta and southwestern Corn Belt will see some dry weather in the next few days, which should allow growers to gather any remaining crops, the forecaster said. 

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