The US Department of Agricuture in March ,forecast reduced corn plantings for 2008. They reported Iowa , down 1 million acres from last year’s record, to 13.2million acres and that both Indiana and Minnesota were expected to drop 800,000 acres from their record highs of last year. Their latest figures show a reduction nationwide for corn planting down from 93,600 acres in 2007 to 86,014 this year a drop of 18%.
This was a reflection of a massive change nationwide to soya. Soybean acreage was then forecast to jump 18 % to 74.8 million acres - an increase of 11.2 million acres from 2007.
The USDA have forecast that as a result of the recent sudden and massive flooding in the central corn belt that crop yield will be down , the USDA forecast for corn supplies running to 31 August 2009 is the lowest in more than a decade, at 673 million bushels or .... three weeks' worth of supply.
The result is that on the Chicago Board of Trade open auction market, Corn for July delivery settled at the close yesterday at a record US$6.73 , up 17 cents on the day.
An immediate consequence is that 24 million acres of land enrolled under the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) (similiar to EU set-aside) is to be made available for hay and forage after the primary nesting season ends for grass-nesting birds. USDA estimates that this program will make available up to 18 million tons of forage worth $1.2 billion.
Pic : Flood waters covered farmland and roads near Spencer,IN , Sunday June 8,2008. From WTHR Chopper 13. (Alan Petersime/The Star)