Washington--As expected, the Agriculture Department lowered the corn production forecast in its August crop report released Thursday due to heat stress over much of the Corn Belt. Economists with the American Farm Bureau Federation continue to stress that tight supplies mean the U.S. needs every bushel of corn that farmers can produce this year.
“Analysts were expecting to see a drop in both average yield and production compared to the July report, but the yield and production numbers actually came out lower than what market watchers were anticipating,” said Todd Davis, AFBF crops economist. “This tells us we still have a very tight supply situation in corn this year. We will need a good harvest this fall to meet market demands and add to our very tight stocks.”
USDA forecast corn production at 12.9 billion bushels in its August report, which is 4 percent larger than 2010 production, and if realized, will be the third largest corn crop on record. However, the August estimate is 5 percent lower than USDA’s July crop estimate, when production was forecast to be 13.5 billion bushels.
“The big drop in production, compared to the July report, is clearly due to the summer heat wave that slammed the corn crop during pollination,” Davis said.