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Ag economist sees big drop in corn acreage–and yields

University of Illinois ag economist Scott Irwin thinks U.S. corn acreage could be down at least five million from the nearly 93 million acres in the March prospective plantings report.

“At least five million acres from prevent plant, plus switching to soybeans, due to late planting conditions,” Irwin says.

He says late planting and excess rain could mean “substantially reduced” corn yields this fall, with a national average corn yield of 170 or less—which could push corn prices into the 4.50 to 5.00 range, he says.

“If we lose five million acres and yield drops to 170, that would be a season-average price of about $4.50—and if you lose 10 million acres and have a yield of 170, it could be as high at $5.00 a bushel.”

But Irwin warns that those price forecasts are “definitely guesswork” at this point.

AUDIO: Scott Irwin
  • USDA already knocked the yield down to 166 bu/acre so the unplanted corn acres will come out june 26 thats the time we find out which way this market will go . The buyers are getting a lot of corn now . So they won’t have to bid after the 26th . I expect contract prices to go higher than corn will really sell for in the fall . my quess is It may not be there yet .

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