|Making headlines late yesterday and during today have been the delayed USDA Crop Progress report. Read the full report here.|
This week was the first week where the USDA released new corn crop condition scores. At 76% good and excellent, these were certainly good overall crop condition scores, but this early on in the season can be somewhat meaningless. The 2012 season started with crop condition scores in the 70’s..
In addition to corn crop ratings, planting and emergence remains well ahead of average. Planting at 95% complete and emergence at 81% is 11 percentage points ahead of average. Soybean planting is also well ahead of average, reaching 84% complete with emergence at 62%, a full 20 percentage points ahead of average.
The condition of winter wheat in the US improved marginally last week, up one percentage point to 48% good and excellent. However, spring wheat condition scores declined week on week and North Dakota remains a concern. Subsoil moisture rating for North Dakota at 50% very short of water will need substantial volumes of rainfall.
What does this all mean?
The USDA crop progress report is a key benchmark for assessing the prospects for US crops. However, there is still a very long way to go before harvest and a lot can happen in the next few months. Weather is still key, and US spring wheat will be a strong watchpoint in the coming weeks, where better soil moisture is needed.
Our views on what this means and outlook for prices is published in our weekly outlook