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3 Big Things Today, April 15, 2022

1. Export sales of corn, soybeans rise while wheat falls

Corn and soybean sales rose week-to-week while wheat dropped, according to the USDA.

Corn sales in the seven days that ended on April 7 totaled 1,332,900 metric tons, up 70% from the previous week and 26% from the prior four-week average, the agency said.

Colombia was in for 108,500 tons, Mexico purchased 418,800 tons, China took 671,500 tons, Canada bought 43,100 tons, and South Korea was in for 151,000 tons.

Sales for the 2022-2023 marketing year totaled 403,100 metric tons. Exports for the week were down 5% to 1.56 million tons.

Wheat sales also dropped 39% from the previous week and 30% from the average to 96,100 metric tons, the government said.

South Korea took 9,500 metric tons, Mexico bought 56,500 tons, Guatemala was in for 12,600 tons, Panama purchased 25,400 tons, and Nigeria took 14,000 tons from U.S. supplies.

An unknown destination canceled shipments of 24,000 metric tons and El Salvador stopped an order for 24,300 tons, the USDA said.

Sales for the 2022-2023 marketing year were reported at 225,200 tons. Exports for the week were up 10% to 340,400 metric tons from the previous week and 7% from the prior 4-week average.

Soybean sales fell to 548,900 metric tons, down 31% from the previous week and 41% from the prior 4-week average, the department said.

China took 435,500 metric tons, the Netherlands bought 49,600 tons, Japan was in for 38,500 tons, Germany purchased 56,000 tons, and South Korea took 26,100 tons.

Sales for the next marketing year totaled 458,000 metric tons. Exports for the week were down 3% to 806,500 tons but up 19% from the prior 4-year average, the USDA said in its report.

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2.   War could affect Ukraine seed production

Amid concerns that Ukraine’s harvest will shrink considerably this year, there is also speculation the war could affect the country’s production of crop seeds for the 2023 planting. The loss of seed production would affect mostly corn and sunflowers.

With production plans already set for this year in other countries, it would be difficult to offset what could be a drop of about half of Ukraine’s seed output, Claude Tabel, president of UFS, a French seed association for seed companies and plant breeders, said in a news conference.

Tabel also noted that the seed sector could see a lot of disruption in the next two years.

By the end of March, Ukrainian farmers had received abut 60% of their corn seeds and 90% of their sunflower seeds, according to a UFS survey of its members, many of which operate in Ukraine.

Tabel said France typically exports crop seeds worth about $180 million each year to Ukraine, which is about a third of the country’s imported seed supply. Because French farmers are switching to regular crop production due to high market prices, the country’s potential to export more spring seed to Ukraine was also being curbed, he noted.

3. Unseasonably warm across the South with more winter-like conditions in the North

Weather for the upcoming weekend in the lower 48 states looks to be unseasonably warm across the South with more winter-like conditions in the North, especially in the northern Rockies and Plains. The most active weather will occur between these two air masses, according to the National Weather Service.

Expect areas of showers and thunderstorms to surround the Mid-South ahead of a low pressure in the Southern Plains and a warm front lifting north through the Lower Mississippi valley this afternoon. By Saturday, the cold front pushes through the East and the Deep South, with the Deep South having the best chance for strong-to-severe thunderstorms. 

Farther north, a Canadian high pressure will settle over the northern High Plains today and into Saturday. Morning lows are forecast to be in the single digits, and highs will struggle to break the freezing mark in parts of Montana and the Dakotas. 

Also expect to see unseasonably cold temperatures in the Pacific Northwest with both Friday and Saturday seeing temperatures 15 degrees below normal. A Pacific storm system will approach the West Coast this afternoon, bringing with it periods of valley/coastal rain and mountain snow to northern California, the Sierra Nevada, and southern Oregon tonight. As the storm moves inland on Saturday, precipitation will push into the northern Rockies where accumulating snowfall is expected. The Sierra Nevada and Shastas of northern California could see more than a foot of snow in higher elevations.

Favorable fire weather conditions remain in effect for the central and southern High Plains today. A Critical Risk area has been issued for southeast Colorado, northeast New Mexico, and the far northern and western portions of the Oklahoma and Texas Panhandles.

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