Soybean acreage soars, corn acres decline

By Daniel Enoch

© Copyright Agri-Pulse Communications, Inc.



WASHINGTON, June 30, 2014 - About 84.8 million acres in the U.S. were planted with soybeans this year, up 11 percent from last year, as growers chased the higher prices offered by the oilseed in relation to corn, USDA said today in a report based on a survey of thousands of farmers in early June.

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Some 91.6 million acres were planted with corn, down 4 percent from 2013 and the lowest planted acres in the U.S. since 2010, USDA said. Still, it's the fifth largest planted acreage for the crop since 1944.

In a USDA survey in March, farmers said they intended to plant 81.5 million acres with soybeans and 91.7 million acres with corn. Corn is the biggest U.S. crop, followed by soybeans.

Planted acreage projections for other crops included:

-All-wheat at 56.5 million acres, up less than 1 percent.

-Cotton: 11.4 million acres, up 9 percent.

-Rice: 3.05 million acres, up 22 percent.

The report also showed continued growth in the use of biotech seeds among major U.S. crops.

For corn, 93 percent of the acreage was planted with biotech varieties, up from 90 percent in 2013. About 94 percent of the soybean crop was sown with biotech seeds, up from 93 percent. The figure for cotton was 96 percent, up from 90 percent, USDA said.

In a separate report, USDA said unsold supplies of U.S. corn totaled 3.85 billion bushels as of June 1, up 39 percent from a year earlier. Usage for the three-month period from March through May was indicated at 3.15 billion bushels, up from 2.63 billion in the same period a year earlier.

Soybean stockpiles were reported at 405 million bushels as the month began, down 7 percent from June 1, 2013. Indicated disappearance for the quarter ended May 31 totaled 589 million bushels, up 4 percent from a year earlier, USDA said.

All wheat old-crop supplies on June 1 were 590 million bushels, USDA said, down 18 percent from a year earlier. The March-May indicated disappearance was 467 million bushels, down 10 percent from the same period a year earlier.

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