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July 2, 2019

2019 U.S. Corn Crop only 94% Emerged vs. Average of 100%

Author: Michael Cordonnier/Soybean & Corn Advisor, Inc.

The weather last week was fairly good for anyone trying to finish replanting some of their corn or planting silage corn on prevent plant acres. Corn emergence is 94% compared to 100% last year and 100% for the 5-year average. As you would expect, the slowest emergence is in the eastern Corn Belt where 89% of the corn has emerged in Illinois (average is 100%), Indiana is 88% (average is 100%), Ohio is 83% (average is 100%), and Michigan is 84% (average is 99%).

There are still approximately 5 million acres of corn that has not emerged and it is already the first week of July. The late emerging corn is going to struggle to reach maturity before the first frost. If it emerges the first week of July for example, it will pollinate in late August or early September. From that point forward, the corn would need 60 days of warmer than normal temperatures to reach maturity before the first frost. That might be a stretch!

Corn acreage - In my opinion, the corn planted acreage released in the June Planted Report (91.7 million acres) cannot be correct. NASS is going to conduct the survey again in July, but we will not get the new planted estimate until the August Crop Report. In the meantime, I am going to continue using a corn planted acreage of 85.3 million acres.

I also think that NASS was overly optimistic by anticipating that 91.1% of the planted corn would be harvested for grain, which is basically a normal amount. I think that is too optimistic due to the fact that some farmers probably did not get the opportunity to replant all the corn they wanted, there will probably be more abandonment than normal this year, and some dairy farmers may harvest additional corn acres in order to have enough to fill their silos, which would leave fewer acres for grain production.

I am anticipating that 88.5% of the corn will be harvested for grain production, but I am not very confident about that percentage. Therefore, my corn harvested acreage is 75.5 million acres.