WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. — The U.S. Department of Agriculture in its Oct. 10 Crop Production report forecast 2019 U.S. production of corn at 13.779 billion bushels, down 19.816 million bushels, or 0.1%, from the September forecast and down 640.766 million bushels, or 4.4%, from 2018. Soybean production was forecast at 3.55 billion bushels, down 82.37 million bushels, or 2.3%, from September and down 877.869 million bushels, or 20%, from 2018, which was revised down to 4.428 billion bushels.
Average corn yield, based on Oct. 1 conditions, was forecast at 168.4 bushels an acre, up 0.2 bushel from September but down 8 bushels from 2018. Corn harvested area was forecast at 81.815 million acres, down 202,000 acres from September but up slightly from 81.74 million acres in 2018.
The average soybean yield was forecast at 46.9 bushels an acre, down 1 bushel from August and down 3.7 bushels from 50.6 bushels per acre last year, which was revised down from 51.6 bushels per acre previously. Harvested area was forecast at 75.626 million acres, down 240,000 acres from September and down 11.968 million acres, or 14%, from 2018.
“Acreage updates were made in several states based on a thorough review of all available data,” the USDA said of the adjustments for both corn and soybeans.
If realized, corn production would be the lowest since 13.602 billion bushels in 2015 but still would be the sixth highest ever. Record high production of 15.148 billion bushels was harvested in 2016. Soybean production would be the lowest since 3.357 billion bushels in 2013 with record high outturn of 4.428 billion bushels in 2018.
The USDA corn production and yield forecasts were above the average of trade expectations, while the soybean production and yield forecasts were below the trade averages.
Nearby Chicago corn futures were down about 12¢ a bushel, but soybean futures were up about 3¢ a bushel after the 11:00 Central time release of the report.
Despite the mostly minor changes from September to the USDA’s October corn and soybean production estimates, the trade remains concerned about potential crop losses to late maturing crops as wintry weather moves into the Upper Midwest in the next few days.
Wheat production estimates were not updated in the October crop report because they were revised in the USDA’s Sept. 30 Small Grains 2019 Summary.