U.S. Farmers to Plant Record Soybean Acres in 2010, USDA Says

02:11PM Mar 31, 2010
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The nation's farmers will plant a record-high 78.1 million acres to soybeans in 2010, USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) said today in its annual Prospective Plantings Report.


Intended soybean acres are expected to increase 1% from last year's previous record,


Other planting estimates:


  • Corn - U.S. corn growers will plant 88.8 million acres in 2010, up 3% from last year. If realized, this would be the second-largest area planted to corn since 1947, behind 2007.
  • Wheat - All wheat planted area is estimated at 53.8 million acres, down 9% from 2009, and the smallest total area since 1970.


  • Cotton - NASS estimated 2010 cotton plantings at 10.5 million acres, up 15% from last year. 


  • Total plantings - NASS expects that total area planted to principal crops nationwide will hold steady at 319.5 million acres, after declining 5.7 million acres in 2009.

Market reaction to the report was neutral, since the estimates were mostly in line with trade expectations.


NASS also released its quarterly Grain Stocks report today, showing corn stocks in all positions at 76.9 billion bushels as of March 1. This is the second-highest March 1 stocks level on record, after 1987. Soybeans stored in all positions on March 1 totaled 1.27 bushels, down 2% from a year ago, while all wheat stored totaled 1.35 billion bushels, up 30% from March 1, 2009.


The 1 March Quarterly Grain Stocks report actually showed higher-than-expected inventories, Rabobank analysts said this morning.


Prospective Plantings provides the first official, survey-based estimates of U.S. farmers' planting intentions for 2010. NASS surveyed approximately 86,000 farm operators across the U.S. during the first two weeks of March. NASS will publish data on actual planted area in the Acreage report, to be released June 30 at 8:30 a.m. EDT.

Catherine Merlo is Western editor for Dairy Today. You can reach her at [email protected]