Still a chance to increase bean acres?
Apr 05, 2012
Pro Farmer Extra
- From the Editors of Pro Farmer newsletter -
April 5, 2012
After USDA's Prospective Plantings report revealed corn planting intentions of 95.9 million acres, it seems strange that some market- and crop-watchers believe there are still 1.5 to 2 million acres "unaccounted for" in the 2012 growing season. But when you push a little harder on these analysts, there is a reason.
The crop-watchers expect the winter wheat harvest to start very early this year... early enough to plant some "full-season-type" soybeans after the wheat harvest in areas like Kansas, Missouri and southern Illinois and Indiana. And with bean prices offering potential strong returns, there is plenty of incentive for wheat growers to harvest that crop and follow the combine with a bean seeder.
Of course, that depends on the weather. If the current dry conditions in traditional double-crop bean areas (and not-so-traditional areas, like Kansas) don't improve by the time those double-crop beans should be planted, it will be tough to work up the courage to invest the money in those acres.
And speaking of dry conditions, drought expanded in the northwestern Corn Belt and there is now an area of abnormally-dry conditions in Illinois showing up on the U.S. Drought Monitor. With La Nina fading to neutral (or even El Nino), rains should start to make their way to these dry areas soon... and the longer it takes the more anxious growers in those areas will become. The dry conditions aren't much of a market factor right now with traders believing "plant in the dust..." but if drought-relieving rains don't arrive before the end of April, the markets will start to build in some drought premium into corn and soybean prices.
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