The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will resurvey farmers to provide a more accurate estimate of the crop size and planted acres. The updated information will provide needed market direction, according to American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) Chief Economist John Newton.
“It’s critically important that we get updated information on the acreage. There’s so much uncertainty on what the crop size this year is ultimately going to be, and so prices are trying to find a balancing point,” Newton told AFBF’s Newsline. “So, that August report that includes the re-interview estimates should include lower corn acres. Once we get an updated yield estimate, we’ll have a better idea what the crop size is.”
USDA data in the recent June acreage report estimated corn acres at 91.7 million, which was much higher than anticipated.
“Everyone had anticipated USDA to have a lower acreage number in this report due to the prevent planting number,” Newton said. “Undersecretary (Bill) Northey has even been on record that prevent plant could be a record 10 million acres this year. That’s why that number was so surprising and led to the dramatic drop in corn prices.”
Newton noted states in the USDA resurvey areas still have many challenges.
“Most of the states report that the crop that is in the ground has been growing in pretty sloppy conditions, so there’s potential for yield drag. And then they also report a lot of idle acres, acres that have yet to be planted,” Newton said. “Many folks are done trying to plant a crop this year, and that’s the ground-level perspective from our Farm Bureau members.”