September 29, 2020 | FBN Insights | Kevin McNew

Crop Conditions Stable

Corn harvest lagged slightly as producers focused on soybeans

Crop Conditions Stable

  • Corn crop conditions were 61% good to excellent, unchanged from 61% last week as expected and remained above 57% last year.
  • Corn harvest was 15% complete compared with 8% last week, 10% last year, and 16% average.
  • Soybean crop ratings were better than expected, improving to 64% good to excellent from 63% last week.
  • Dropping leaves was 74% complete versus 69% average, with many northern states over 10% ahead of average.
  • Soybean harvest was further along than expected at 20% complete compared with 6% last week, 6% last year, and 15% average
  • Winter wheat planting was on pace at 35% complete versus 34% last year, and 33% average. 
  • 10% of the winter wheat crop has emerged, slightly ahead of the 8% average.
  • Upland cotton crop conditions slipped to 43% good to excellent from 45% last week.

FBN’s Take On What It Means: The corn harvest lagged slightly as producers focused on soybeans. The dry conditions in the western Corn Belt and northern Plains along with higher prices are encouraging a fast harvest pace for soybeans. However, the Delta has been plagued with wet weather slowing bean harvest. Harvest pressure will continue to weigh on markets in the near term as activity accelerates with weather mostly favorable. 

Brazil Drier Than Normal

  • Most of central Brazil has received less than 25% of average rainfall in September.
  • Early season soybean planting normally begins in late September and early October for center-south and center-west Brazil.
  • Dryness should have little impact on early soybean yields as long as seasonal rainfall begins in a timely fashion.
  • Better rains have fallen in southern Brazil and soil moisture is rated adequate to marginally adequate.
  • Corn planting is underway in the south at 32% complete, well ahead of last year and the average of 21%.

FBN’s Take On What It Means: Brazil’s dry season has been much drier than usual.  If soybean planting is delayed late enough it may result in delayed harvesting which could open the US export window a little wider and continue to support prices. A delay in soybean planting could also lead to a delay in the planting and development of the safrinha corn which could result in lower production for those crops because of reproduction that may occur more in the annual dry season. The weather forecast, which is wetter into the second week of October, will be closely monitored.
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