WASHINGTON, July 12, 2017 – A USDA report on Wednesday boosted corn and soybean harvest projections while cutting anticipated returns for the nation’s wheat crop.
In the July update of USDA’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates, officials added 190 million bushels to the corn crop (for a total of 14.25 billion bushels) and 5 million bushels to soybean production (4.26 billion bushels). At the same time, more recent figures on planted wheat acreage led USDA to pull 64 million bushels from its earlier harvest estimate, dropping returns down to 1.76 billion bushels.
The report noted a discrepancy between data on wheat acres compared to corn and soybean acres; wheat acreage comes from a National Agricultural Statistics Service crop production report released today, but figures for other commodities are based on a June 30 acreage report. The crop production report projects a 2 percent increase in winter wheat production from June estimates, but a 45 percent drop in durum wheat and a 21 percent drop in other spring wheat from 2016 figures.
The changes led to alterations in the projected season-average prices, dropping a dime for a bushel of corn to a range of $2.90 to $3.70, but raising the estimates for wheat (up 50 cents per bushel to a range of $4.40 to $5.20) and soybeans (up 10 cents to a range of $8.40 to $10.40).
In other commodities, oat production was dropped 13 million bushels, barley production was docked 16 million bushels, and sorghum production was raised about 25 million bushels from June’s estimate. USDA also anticipates more Florida sugar production, but also rising imports due to a projected increase in deliveries for human consumption. The cotton production estimate was dropped 200,000 bales despite no change in domestic use or exports.
In the protein sector, the WASDE eyes an increase in red meat and poultry production from last month on higher beef and broiler harvesting, making up for losses in pork and turkey. Next year, however, USDA is anticipating reduced production in the sector. The report also predicts an increase in beef exports and imports in both 2017 and 2018; pork, poultry, and egg trade forecasts were unchanged from last month.
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