Trends in Global Soybean Production

by David A. Widmar

As 2017 got underway, the question on everyone mind was if U.S. soybean acres would exceed corn acres. While this didn’t happen, the stage was set by more favorable prices and budget returns for soybeans. Given soybeans more favorable position for U.S. producers in recent years, we step back to review the global soybean production trends. This post builds off earlier work that considered corn (here and here) and beef trends (here). More specifically, this week’s post considered changes in global soybean production, the source of those increases, and the major players. Continue reading

Who Hasn’t Had Big Crop Yields During the Ag Slowdown?

By Brent Gloy & David Widmar

Since 2014, U.S. farmers have managed to produce very large corn, soybean, and wheat crops. These, and large crops around the world, have weighed on prices and created a major economic downturn for U.S. farmers.  While record large crops have meant most farmers have enjoyed high yields, U.S. production takes place across a very wide and diverse geography.  As such, some producers have seen high yields while others may have been less fortunate.

This week we look at county level corn, soybean, and wheat yields to better understand how crop yields have varied across the country during the economic downturn.  Areas where yields have been particularly high should have weathered the economic downturn better than areas where yields may not have been quite so good. Continue reading

Two Corn Yield Myths in 2017

by David A. Widmar

Large yields and growing grain stocks have been a driving force of commodity markets in recent years. Given the multi-year pressure on commodity prices, the annual question of ‘how big will the crop be’ seems to be even more relevant this year. While there is a lot of growing season – and planting – that remains, speculation began months ago. This week’s posts looks at two myths we’ve heard in recent months about yields and the 2017 corn crop. Continue reading