2013 corn crop: Where it is and where it may be going

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Corn planters, which covered 42 million acres of ground the week of May 12th, slowed considerably this past week and covered 14 million acres for the period beginning May 19th. 

When USDA issued its weekly crop progress report Tuesday, it found 86 percent of the U.S. corn crop had been planted, with another 14 million acres to go. And questions are certainly justifiable about how much of that will be planted to corn, enroute to USDA’s March 28th estimate of just over 96 million acres.

USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Staff issued its weekly Crop Progress Report , and found some states that were well behind the pace earlier in the month had caught up. However, other states, with a significant amount of intended corn acres were rained out of the field the past week as the prevented planting crop insurance dates arrive.

Crop progress update for corn:

Corn Belt state

Planted as of May 26

Planted as of May 19

Percent Emerged

Unplanted Intentions

Illinois

89

59

68

1.34 mil

Indiana

86

64

56

854 thou.

Iowa

85

71

54

2.13 mil

Kansas

88

70

52

552 thou.

Michigan

90

78

53

260 thou.

Minnesota

82

70

40

1.62 mil.

Missouri

83

70

57

578 thou.

Nebraska

96

84

61

396 thou.

North Dakota

72

61

26

1.15 mil.

Ohio

89

74

52

434 thou.

South Dakota

91

75

52

531 thou.

Wisconsin

64

43

27

2.44 mil.

States that were less affected by the 2012 drought had indicated a greater intention of increasing their corn acreage. Subsequently, almost half of the 2013 corn acres were expected to be in Neb., Mo., Iowa, Minn., N.D., and S.D. 

Heavy rains this past weekend has brought planting to a halt, but progress was slow prior to the weekend, where wet fields hampered corn planting.  

Currently, planting ranged from 72 percent to 91 percent complete in those states, but it also represents 6.4 mil. acres of corn which are not planted, and will likely not be planted by June 1, based on soil conditions and weather forecasts. Where corn is planted, it is 54 percent emerged, up from 19 percent previous week, but below 5-yr average for the week of 67 percent. 

Crop progress update for soybeans:

Corn Belt state

Planted as of May 26

Planted as of May 19

Percent Emerged

Illinois

68

16

40

Indiana

56

20

60

Iowa

54

13

40

Kansas

52

19

37

Michigan

53

16

66

Minnesota

40

8

42

Missouri

57

27

30

Nebraska

61

26

63

North Dakota

26

3

33

Ohio

49

27

70

South Dakota

52

16

48

Wisconsin

27

7

29

Although Corn Belt farmers are planting soybeans a bit later than normal, there is still time to secure good yields if the weather cooperates. USDA Tuesday reported soybean planting is 44 percent complete. Illinois and Iowa are at 40 percent emerged with Indiana at 60 percent emerged. Again, wet forecast will keep progress slow this week. Nationally, 14 percent of soybeans are emerged, up 11 points on the week, but still 16 points behind the five-year average for the week.

Prevented planting

While farmers are optimists and all expected to get all of their acreage planted resulting in a bumper crop, the topic of prevented planting has never crossed anyone’s mind. While the following information is something farmers will not need, they can just make note of the fact it was offered. (He said with tongue in cheek.)

There are two sources for information about prevented planting.  One is your crop insurance agent. You have his business card somewhere with his phone number; and it may also be in your telephone book.

The other resource is USDA’s handbook on prevented planting.  Consult your agent first.

Prevented planting keys on a specific date, which enables a producer to obtain 60 percent of his guarantee, if the crop could not be planted by that date. An alternative is to plant the crop after the date, which declining coverage each day that passes without the crop being planted. Your prevented planting deadline depends on your state and in many cases your county. If you are unaware of which group your operation is in, check with your crop insurance agent.

Prevented planting deadlines

Corn Belt State

Corn

Soybeans

Illinois

May 31 and June 5

June 15 and June 20

Indiana

June 5

June 20

Iowa

May 31

June 15

Kansas

May 20 and May 31

June 25 and June 30

Michigan

June 5

June 15

Minnesota

May 31

June 10

Missouri

May 25 and June 5

June 20 and June 25

Nebraska

May 25 and May 31

June 15

North Dakota

May 25 and May 31

June 10

Ohio

May 25 and May 31

June 15

South Dakota

May 25 and May 31

June 10

Wisconsin

May 25 and May 31

June 10 and June 15

Someone with a Revenue Protection crop insurance policy with 80 percent coverage and a 150 bushel Actual Production History (APH) can determine his prevented planting payment, which will be based on the $5.65 spring price guarantee. Multiply the spring price by the 80 percent coverage level and by the APH yield to get a minimum guarantee of $678 per acre for crop insurance. If the 60 percent prevent planting payment is the producer’s choice, the payment would be $407, or $678 multiplied by 60 percent. 

If you pursue planting, and are able to get planted by June 15, in a state where the deadline was May 31, your guaranteed coverage will be the $678 per acre, minus 15 percent, or $576.

While these are only two quick examples, there are many more provisions of the USDA’s Prevented Planting guide, and that is why there are 116 pages. You can look up the answer to your question, or consult your crop insurance agent, which should always be part of the final action.

Summary:

While progress has been made toward completion of corn planting, nearly 14 million expected acres remains unplanted due to wet conditions. Operators of those acres may well be exploring the details of prevented planting in their crop insurance policy to determine what action they want to take. Before any decision is made, one should consult his crop insurance agent.

Source: FarmGate blog



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