WASHINGTON, DC, US — The US Department of Agriculture on May 12 said the outlook for corn in 2020-21 was for record high production and domestic use, greater exports and larger ending stocks than forecast for the current year. The soybean outlook for 2020-21 outlook was for larger supplies and higher crush and exports, but smaller ending stocks compared with 2019-20.
The USDA forecast the carryover of corn on Sept. 1, 2021, at 3.318 billion bushels, up 1.22 billion bushels, or 58%, from 2.098 billion bushels as the projection for the current year. The 2021 corn carryover as forecast would be the largest since 4.259 billion bushels in 1988.
The 2020 corn crop was projected at a record 15.995 billion bushels, up 2.332 billion bushels, or 17%, from 13.663 billion bushels in 2019. The production forecast was based on a projected harvested area at 89.6 million acres (based on a planted area forecast at 97 million acres in the Prospective Plantings report issued at the end of March and historical abandonment) and a weather-adjusted trendline yield at 178.5 bushels per acre.
The total corn supply in 2020-21 was forecast at a record 18.118 billion bushels, up 2.190 billion bushels, or 14%, from 15.928 billion bushels in 2019-20.
The USDA projected domestic use of corn in 2020-21 at a record 12.650 billion bushels, up 595 million bushels, or 5%, from a forecast 12.055 billion bushels in 2019-20. Feed and residual use of corn in 2020-21 was forecast at 6.05 billion bushels, up 350 million bushels from a projected 5.7 billion bushels in the current year.
Food, seed and industrial use of corn in 2020-21 was projected at 6.6 billion bushels, up 245 million bushels, or 4%, from 6.355 billion bushels as the 2019-20 forecast. Of that total, corn use for ethanol in 2020-21 was projected at 5.2 billion bushels, up 250 million bushels from the downwardly revised (by 100 million bushels) 4.95 billion bushels as the 2019-20 forecast.
The USDA commented, “Corn used for ethanol is projected to increase from the 2019-20 COVID-19-reduced levels, based on expectations for a rebound in US motor gasoline consumption.”
The USDA projected corn exports in 2020-21 at 2.15 billion bushels, up 375 million bushels, or 21%, from the forecast 1.775 billion bushels in the current year. The USDA said, “US market share is expected to increase from the 2019-20 multi-year low but remains below the average level seen during 2015-16 to 2019-20 with expected competition from Argentina, Brazil and Ukraine.”
The USDA projected the 2020-21 US corn stocks-to-use ratio at 22.4%, the highest since 1992-93.
“With larger stocks relative to use, the season average farm price is projected at $3.20 per bushel, down 40¢ from 2019-20 and the lowest since 2006-07,” the USDA said.
The USDA projected the carryover of soybeans on Sept. 1, 2021, at 405 million bushels, down 175 million bushels, or 30%, from 580 million bushels as forecast for 2019-20. As forecast, the 2021 carryover would be the smallest since 302 million bushels in 2017.
The USDA forecast the 2020 soybean crop at 4.125 billion bushels, up 568 million bushels, or 16%, from 3.557 billion bushels in 2019 and compared with 4.428 billion bushels in 2018.
The 2020-21 soybean supply was forecast at 4.72 billion bushels, up 239 million bushels, or 5%, from 4.481 billion bushels in 2019-20 and compared with 4.88 billion bushels in 2018-19.
The USDA forecast the soybean crush in 2020-21 at 2.13 billion bushels, up 5 million bushels from the projection for the current year.
Soybean exports in 2020-21 were projected at 2.05 billion bushels, up 375 million bushels, or 22%, from a forecast 1.675 billion bushels in 2019-20. It should be noted the forecast for 2019-20 exports was lowered 100 million bushels from the April outlook.
Total soybean disappearance in 2020-21 was projected at 4.315 billion bushels, up 414 million bushels, or 11%, from 3.901 billion bushels as forecast for 2019-20.
The USDA forecast the average farm price of soybeans in 2020-21 at $8.20 a bushel, down 30¢ from the projection for the current year at $8.50 a bushel.