US 2012 corn crop to break records - USDA

10 May 2012 16:23  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--The 2012 US corn crop will shatter all-time records for total production and yield, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said on Thursday.

US corn production in 2012 is estimated at a record 14.8bn bushels, up by 2.4bn bushels from last year, the USDA said in its monthly World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report.

The previous US corn production record was 13.09bn bushels in 2009.

The record corn production would result from a 5.1m-acre increase in harvested area and higher expected yields.

The 2012 corn yield is projected at a record 166 bushels/acre, USDA said.

Total US corn use for the 2012-2013 marketing year (1 September-31 August) is projected at 15.7bn bushels, up by 2.2bn bushels from 2011-2012.

Corn used for ethanol is projected at 5bn bushels for the marketing year, steady from the amount expected to be used in 2011-2012.

"While still just an estimate, the confidence USDA is displaying in American farmers underscores their unique ability to feed the world and help renewably fuel the nation," said Matt Hartwig, spokesman for the Renewable Fuels Association.

"There is a lot of growing season left, and these numbers could change by the fall," Hartwig said.  "But with normal growing conditions it is clear that farmers will continue to meet the bell and provide safe, reliable food and clean, domestic fuel and silence those chicken littles that perpetually predict a shortage of corn and catastrophe in the grocery aisle."

The USDA projected global corn production for 2012-2013 at a record 945.8m short tons, up by 75.3m short tons from 2011-2012.

The largest increases in foreign corn production are expected to come from Argentina, Mexico, Canada, South Africa, China and Ukraine.

US soybean production is projected at 3.205bn bushels from a harvested area of 73m acres.

Soybean yields are projected at 43.9 bushels/acre, up by 2.4 bushels/acre from 2011.

In early trading at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, corn for December was trading lower at $5.07/bushel while soybeans for November were moving higher at $13.62/bushel.

By: Frank Zaworski
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