USDA Adjusts Expected Crop Production


The USDA report released on Nov. 9 decreased the expected U.S. corn production for 2011 to 12.3 billion bushels. This compares to USDA 2011 corn production estimates of 12.4 billion bushels in October, 12.5 billion bushels in September and 12.9 billion bushels in August. Total U.S. corn production was 12.4 billion bushels in 2010, and 13.1 billion bushels in 2009. The recent USDA report estimated total soybean production in 2011 at 3.05 billion bushels, which is a slight decrease from the 3.06 billion bushel estimate in October. The 2011 soybean production estimate is a 9 percent reduction from the 2010 production of 3.33 billion bushels.

USDA is estimating that the 2011 average corn yield in the U.S. will be 146.7 bu./acre, which is down slightly from the September yield estimate of 148.1 bu., which is below the 2010 U.S. corn yield of 152.8 bu./acre, and is well below the record U.S. average corn yield of 164.7 bu. in 2009. The average U.S. soybean yield for 2011 is now estimated at 41.3 bu./acre, which compares to 43.5 bu. in 2010. The record U.S. soybean yield was 44.0 bu. in 2009.

Based on the Nov. 9 report, USDA is estimating the 2011 corn yield in Minnesota at 160 bu., which is a reduction of 5 bu. for acre from the October estimate. The 2011 corn yield estimate is well below Minnesota’s record average corn yield of 177 bu./acre, which was set in 2010. USDA is projecting Iowa to have a 2011 corn yield of 171 bu./acre, which compares to a final yield of 167 bu. in 2010, but is well below the state record corn yield of 182 bu. in 2008. Illinois is now projected to have a 2011 average corn yield of 156 bu./acre, compared to 157 bu. in 2010. Estimates call for Indiana to have a 2011 average corn yield of 145 bu./acre, compared to 157 bu. last year, and for Nebraska corn yields for 2011 to be 160 bu./acre, compared to 166 bu. in 2010.

The Nov. 9 USDA report estimated the 2011 Minnesota soybean yield at 40 bu./acre, which is a decrease of 1 bu. from the October report, and is well below the state record soybean yield of 45 bu., set in 2010 and 2005. The 2011 Iowa soybean yield is estimated at 50.5 bu./acre, which is slightly below the final average yield of 51 bu. in 2010. Other projected state soybean yields for 2011 are Illinois at 46 bu., Indiana at 42 bu. and Nebraska at 53 bu. Illinois and Indiana estimated average soybean yields for 2011 are well below final 2010 average yields, while 2011 yield estimates for Nebraska are slightly above final 2010 yield figures.


Steady Supply and Demand Report

The monthly USDA WASDE Report released on Nov. 9 was steady basically unchanged for corn market prices and slightly bearish for soybean market prices in the coming months. USDA is now estimating 2011-2012 U.S. corn carryover stocks at 843 million bushels, which is a reduction of 23 million bushels from the October estimates. USDA lowered expected corn usage for feed by 100 million bushels for the coming year, which helped offset some of the anticipated corn production reductions for 2011. The projected 2011-2012 corn carryover at under 1 billion bushels remains extremely tight, which will likely to keep continued strength in the corn market. The next big factor for the corn market will likely be the anticipated planted acres in the U.S. for the 2012 growing season.

Based on the November USDA Report, soybean ending stocks for 2011-2012 are expected to be 195 million bushels, which is an increase of 35 million bushels from the October estimate. Global demand for soybeans and other oilseeds has been somewhat weaker in recent months, causing USDA to lower estimates for U.S. soybean exports by 50 million bushels for the coming year. Soybean production estimates for the coming growing season in South America have also been increased in recent months. There seems to be growing evidence that soybean stocks are on a slight increase, which could pressure the soybean markets a bit in the coming months.

USDA is currently estimating the U.S average cash corn price for 2011-2012 in a range of $6.20-7.20/bu., or an average of $6.70, which is unchanged from the October estimated average price, and is about $1.50 higher than corn price estimates in November 2010. USDA is projecting the U.S. average soybean price for 2011-2012 in a range of $11.60-13.60/bu., resulting in an average soybean price of $12.60, which is a decrease of 55¢/bu. compared to the October estimate, but is still well above the estimated average price of $11.45 in November 2010.


Editor’s note: Kent Thiesse is a former University of Minnesota Extension educator and now is Vice President of MinnStar Bank, Lake Crystal, MN. You can contact him at 507-726-2137 or via e-mail at [email protected]

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