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The Corn Belt struggles with more uncertainty

In the estimates and in the fields

The Crop Progress report seems like a tag-along little brother when it is issued later on the same day as the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) releases its monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report.

Big brother gets all the attention – oh, and by the way, here’s another one.

That’s particularly true this week considering the surprising numbers from the WASDE report. Estimates for corn production rose to 13.901 billion bushels – with estimated corn area planted at 90 million acres. Soybean production estimates dropped significantly, thanks to a reduction from an estimated 80 million acres planted to 76.7 million.

“It does not make sense that corn acreage is still so high,” Ohio farmer Fred Traver emailed AccuWeather. “It would make sense that both beans and corn acres would be down significantly with the wet spring we had. Everything is just behind.”

The condition of corn and soybeans considered “good” or “excellent” remained 60% or lower for the ninth straight week. Good-or-excellent rated corn was at 57% -- matching the previous week – and soybeans were at 54%, also the same as the week before, based on 18 key corn- or soybean-producing states.

Last year at this time, good-or-excellent rated corn was at 70% and soybeans were at 66%.

Indiana and Ohio had the lowest good-to-excellent ratings for both crops, with Indiana at 33% for corn and 34% for soybeans, while Ohio was at 34% for corn and 29% for soybeans.