By Jim Barrett
The Crop Production report issued today by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) forecasted soybean and corn production down from 2018. Soybean production is down 19 percent from 2018, forecast at 3.68 billion bushels; corn growers are expected to decrease their production 4 percent from last year, forecast at 13.9 billion bushels.
Area for soybean harvest is forecast at 75.9 million acres with planted area for the nation estimated at 76.7 million acres, down 4 percent from the June estimate, and down 14 percent from last year. Soybean yields are expected to average 48.5 bushels per acre, down 3.1 bushels from last year. If realized, the forecasted yield will be a record high in Arkansas, Kentucky, and Tennessee.
Average corn yield is forecast at 169.5 bushels per acre, down 6.9 bushels from last year. NASS forecasts record-high yields in Kentucky and Tennessee. Acres planted to corn, at 90.0 million, are down 2 percent from NASS’ June estimate but up 2 percent from 2018. As of August 4, 57 percent of this year’s corn crop was reported in good or excellent condition, 14 percentage points below the same time last year.
Wheat production is forecast at 1.98 billion bushels, up 5 percent from 2018. Growers are expected to produce 1.33 billion bushels of winter wheat this year, up 12 percent from last year. Durum wheat production is forecast at 57.3 million bushels, down 26 percent from last year. All other spring wheat production is forecast at 597 million bushels, down 4 percent from 2018. Based on August 1 conditions, the U.S. all wheat yield is forecast at 51.6 bushels per acre, up 4.0 bushels from last year.
Today’s report also included the first production forecast for U.S. cotton. NASS forecasts all cotton production at 22.5 million 480-pound bales, up 23 percent from last year. Yield is expected to average 855 pounds per harvested acre, down 9 pounds from last year.
NASS interviewed approximately 20,800 producers across the country in preparation for this report. NASS is also gearing up to conduct its September Agricultural Survey, which will focus on wheat, barley, oats and rye growers. That survey will take place during the first two weeks of September.
The Crop Production report is published monthly and is available online at www.nass.usda.gov.