While corn futures fell precipitously today with this years crop losing 10 billion United States dollars on paper, there were more reasons for pain in the plains. Wheat hit a nine year low reaching 4.36 United States dollars per bushel.1 Wheat plantings were estimated by the USDA to only measure 50.8 million acres, a 50 year low. Meanwhile the acreage of corn plantings surpassed early season estimates coming in around 94.1 million acres2 which projects to a potential 194 million more bushels3 of corn this year than markets were expecting.
The drought typical of the Middle West in La Nina years never materialized in spite of a dry spell from late May to early June teasing the possibility.
Soybean plantings appear to be lower than the USDA and the market expected, likely the result of reasons relating to competition obvious to farmers. The cherry on top of all this pain is that domestic use of all crops for livestock feed is continuing to fall and expected to continue to fall as imports continue their rise. Sorry for your loss.
For out less agriculturally inclined readers a bushel used to be a measure of volume equivalent to eight gallons. Now markets measure weight which varies by crop and moisture content. A market bushel of wheat is 60 pounds at a 13.5% moisture content. Or in the only metric that matters ~92,000 kilocalories. ↩
Up 550,000 over the March estimate. ↩
56 pound at a 15.5% moisture content for ~139,00 kilocalories per bushel. ↩