The nation’s farmers have planted a record soybean crop while reducing corn acreage by 2 percent from last year.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Tuesday said a record 85.1 million acres of soybeans are in the ground, up 2 percent from 83.7 million acres in 2014.
Iowa farmers have planted 10 million acres of soybeans, up from 9.9 million acres last year. That’s the most soybeans planted in the No. 2 soybean producing state since 2006.
The USDA said farmers nationally have planted 88.9 million acres of corn, the lowest since 2010. Iowa, the nation’s leading corn producer, has 13.7 million acres planted for ethanol, feed and other products, unchanged from last year.
Corn and soybean conditions in Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio have shown deterioration in recent weeks with the heavy rain. Farmers who did not get their soybeans fields planted by Wednesday may be forced to use crop insurance payments to cover the lost production.
The lower corn crop and higher soybean plantings were expected by analysts due to the sharp drop off in commodity prices.
The USDA on Monday said the average price received by farmers for corn during May was $3.62 per bushel, down from $4.71 per bushel in May 2014. Soybean prices received by farmers have fallen from $14.40 per bushel in May 2014 to $9.60 per bushel in May 2015.
ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT
The USDA said it plans to resurvey farmers in several states about plantings of soybeans and other crops due to the heavy rains. The agency will publish the new data Aug. 12 in a crop report.
Analysts expect the wet weather will prompt USDA to reduce the number of planted and harvested soybean acres later this year.