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USDA Increases Corn and Soybean Production Forecast

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 9, 2012 – The Agriculture Department’s monthly crop report moderately increased 2012 production forecasts for corn and soybeans compared to the prior month.

“As anticipated, there were no major changes to the projected production totals for both corn and soybeans this month,” said AFBF senior economist Todd Davis. “The early harvest numbers provided a fairly clear picture on the size of the 2012 corn and soybean crops in the October report,” he added.

USDA forecast corn production at 10.7 billion bushels, down 1.6 billion bushels compared to 2011. The average yield for corn was forecast at 122.3 bushels per acre this year, up slightly from the October projection.

Corn ending stocks for the marketing year are projected to be tight at 647 million bushels, representing 21 days of supply.

Soybean production is forecast at 2.97 billion bushels, down 123 million bushels compared to 2011. The average yield for soybeans was forecast at 39.3 bushels per acre, 2.6 bushels per acre less than the 2011 average yield.

Ending stocks for soybeans are projected to be 140 million bushels (about a 17-day supply), which Davis described as “uncomfortably tight.”

How the weather will affect corn and soybean production in South America continues to be closely watched, with USDA forecasting that Argentina and Brazil will increase soybean production by 1.87 billion bushels compared to 2011.

“A large soybean crop in both the U.S. and South America is needed to relieve the tight stock situation here,” Davis said. “All of the production uncertainty will be of concern to the market until both continents have large crops that allow stocks to rebuild. This uncertainty will keep the market volatile.”

USDA is continuing to conduct producer surveys and field analysis, which will provide information about the drought damage done to the 2012 corn and soybean crop, according to Davis. The department’s January report will provide the final production projects for the 2012 crop.

USDA’s crop production reports and world grain supply/demand estimates are available online.

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Contacts: Mace Thornton
(202) 406-3641
macet@fb.org
Cyndie Sirekis
(202) 406-3649
cyndies@fb.org