"The market will try to gauge whether production prospects
change during August and early September," said Darrel Good.
"The USDA's weekly Crop Progress report indicated that crop
condition ratings improved for corn and held about steady for
soybeans during the week ended Aug. 10. Both crops lag average
"Only 30 percent of the corn crop was in the dough
stage, compared to the average of 50 percent, and only 60
percent of the soybean crop was setting pods, compared to the
average of 75 percent. In addition to average temperature and
rainfall in August and early September, production could be
influenced by the occurrence of the first killing frost."
Good's comments came as he reviewed the USDA's early
anticipated August Crop Production report, which revealed
prospects for a 2008 U.S. corn crop of 12.288 billion bushels
and a soybean crop of 2.973 billion bushels. Both forecasts, as
noted, were within the range of pre-report guesses, but the corn
crop forecast exceeded the average guess by 350 million bushels.
Based on extensive re-interviews in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa,
Minnesota, Missouri and Wisconsin, planted acreage of corn is
estimated at 86.977 million acres, 350,000 less than the June
estimate. Acreage estimates declined by 100,000 in Illinois,
Indiana and Iowa and 50,000 in Wisconsin.
Acreage expected to be harvested for grain is forecast at
79.29 million, 350,000 more than forecast in June. The U.S.
average yield potential is pegged at 155 bushels, 3.9 bushels
above the 2007 average and the second-highest following the
average of 160.4 bushels in 2004. The crop forecast of 12.288
billion is 786 million smaller than the record crop of 2007.
"In a separate report, the USDA's World Agricultural Outlook
Board increased the forecast of corn used for ethanol during the
current marketing year by 50 million bushels and during the
2008-09 marketing year by 150 million bushels," said Good.
"Exports during the current year are expected to reach 2.425
billion bushels, 25 million less than projected last month.
"The projection of feed and residual use during the 2008-09
marketing year was increased by 100 million bushels. Stocks of
corn on Sept. 1 are forecast at 1.576 billion, 22 million below
the July forecast, while Sept. 1, 2009, stocks are projected at
1.133 billion, 300 million above last month's forecast."
The 2008-09 marketing year average farm price is forecast in
a range of $4.90 to $5.90, 60 cents below the July forecast, he
[to top of second column]
"There were also some changes in coarse grain production forecasts
for other parts of the world," he noted. "Production prospects have
declined for Argentina, but improved for Canada, Mexico, the
European Union, Russia and the Ukraine. Coarse grain production
outside the United States is forecast at a record 760.33 million
metric tons, nearly 5 percent larger than last year's crop."
Planted acres of soybeans in the United States are now estimated
at 74.783 million acres, 250,000 above the June estimate. Acreage
estimates were increased by 100,000 acres in Indiana and Iowa and by
50,000 acres in Wisconsin.
Harvested acreage is projected at 73.341 million, 1.22 million
more than forecast in June. Forecasts of harvested acreage increased
by 50,000 in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa; by 10,000 in Missouri; and
70,000 in Wisconsin.
"The U.S. average yield potential is seen at 40.5 bushels, 0.7
below the 2007 average and the lowest since 2003," said Good.
"Yields are expected to be below the 2007 average in Illinois and
Iowa, but a bushel higher in Indiana. The projected crop of 2.973
billion bushels is 388 million larger than the 2007 harvest."
The USDA's World Agricultural Outlook Board reduced the forecast
for the domestic soybean crush during the current year by 10 million
bushels and raised the forecast of year-ending stocks by an equal
amount, to 135 million bushels. The forecast of the domestic crush
for 2008-09 was reduced by 15 million bushels.
Stocks of soybeans on Sept. 1, 2009, are expected to remain small
at 135 million bushels. The 2008-09 marketing year average farm
price is projected in a range of $11.50 to $13, 50 cents below the
"Soybean production in Brazil in 2009 is forecast at 2.3 billion
bushels, 55 million less than forecast last month but 55 million
more than produced this year," said Good. "For Argentina, production
is forecast at 1.82 billion bushels, 55 million more than forecast
in July and 110 million more than the 2008 harvest."
[Text from file received
from the University
of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental