Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Crop Progress Report

Yesterday I mentioned that we are behind schedule as far as field work and planting goes.   I know we are behind schedule because I live it and remember the weather and corn crop from year to year just like every other farmer out there.  But, a chicken farmer in Arkansas who needs to purchase corn for his birds feed may want to know how the Midwest corn crop is progressing so he can decide if he should start contracting corn early in case there is a short corn crop due to delayed planting. 

So, today I thought I would enlighten you on one of the many reports that our United States government releases each week to keep all citizens abreast to the progress of our nations food supply.  (Doesn't that sound very official?  I just made it up.)  That sounds much more daunting than it really is but if you're curious about US Ag's progress through out the year and you like numbers the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) website is worth checking out.


This is the link to the USDA's April 22, 2013 Crop Progress Report:  http://usda01.library.cornell.edu/usda/current/CropProg/CropProg-04-22-2013.pdf

This report includes crops from corn to sugar beets to cotton and the major states that grow these crops.  The report comes out every Monday at 4:00pm during the growing season which is designated to be between April 1st and November 30th.  I know, I know, farmers in Texas have been planting corn since February, but this is one of the few times that Iowa gets to beat Texas at something. 

This is the summarized version of the info on the corn progress report that came out yesterday. 

Today’s USDA Crop Progress Report indicates the U.S. corn crop is 4% planted compared with 26% this week 2012 and 16% 5-year average. 
IA – 0% done; last yr=  8%; 5-yr= 14%
IL – 1% done; last yr= 56%; 5-yr= 24%
IN – 1% done; last yr= 43%; 5-yr= 16%
MN – 0% done; last yr= 10%; 5-yr= 11%
NE – 0% done; last yr= 13%; 5-yr=  8%
US – 4% done; last yr= 26%; 5-yr= 16%

I really don't know what the % accuracy is on this report.  But I do know that this info makes me nervous and Joe grumpy.  (It just reminds us that we have a whole lot of work to get done really soon to get caught up to where we should be.)  Grain merchandisers follow this information right along with the growing season weather outlooks.  This report does influence of the price of commodities and this does effect the price of your food, fuel and clothing ever so slightly.  BUT REMEMBER:  For every dollar you spend on food the US farmer get about $.11 of that.

If you go to the USDA's Report Page: http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?navid=AGENCY_REPORTS
you will see a plethora of reports available there again being the statistics kind of girl I like reading the Weekly Weather and Crop Bulletin.  It goes back into the 1970's.  I see that during the week in October 1971, when my sister was born, Iowa and Illinois corn farmers had great weather for harvesting.  Hmmm, I'm wondering if Dad stuck around at the hospital and waited for the delivery or if he dropped Mom off and went back to combining? 

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