US corn planting 68% complete - USDA

03 May 2010 22:06  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--US corn growers have planted 68% of their expected 2010 crop, more than double the 32% planted by this time in 2009, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said on Monday.

Over the past five years, US growers have planted an average of 40% of the corn crop by 2 May.

Generally dry weather and an early warm-up of soils in the Midwest provided good planting conditions in all of the 18 top corn and soybean states surveyed by the USDA.

US farmers are expected to plant 88.1m acres to corn this year, an earlier USDA survey said.

Increasing demand from the ethanol industry is expected to consume an additional 400m bushels of corn this year, the Renewable Fuel Association said.

Of the corn planted so far, 19% has germinated and emerged from the soil compared with 4% a year ago.

In Illinois, 87% of intended corn acres had been planted as of 2 May, compared with only 5% on that date a year ago, the USDA said.

In Iowa, 84% of intended corn acres have been planted compared with 58% last year.

As growers finish planting corn, they typically turn their attention to soybeans.

The USDA said that 15% of an expected record 78m-acre soybean crop had been planted by 2 May, compared with only 5% on that date last year.

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By: Frank Zaworski
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