The slow start of corn planting in the key growing areas of the United States threatens the grain’s production levels.
The US Agriculture Department reported that farmers had already seeded 4.00% of the crop as of April 17. However, this pace declined 3.00% from a year earlier and was below the five-year average of 6.00%.
In addition, growers in central production states like Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, and North Dakota had not seeded any corn yet.
American farmers target to have their seeding finished by May. The yield potential could drop by about a bushel per acre for each day their crop missed that deadline.
Accordingly, a significant output for the commodity is indeed needed this year to help fill the supply gap caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The ongoing geopolitical crisis has left grain stocks stranded in the vital export country since last year. Ukrainian farmers were also not able to plant due to the escalation of the war. This conflict alarms to curtail production in 2022.
Experts emphasize the importance of producing maximum crops to keep prices stable. At the same time, they stated that the agricultural sector notably needed good weather.
Chicago Board of Trade corn futures have surged 17.50% since Moscow’s invasion. Then, the most-active contract neared a 10-year high this week. As of writing, US maize futures edged up 0.43% or 3.40 points to $802.38 per metric ton.
Subsequently, grain importers have scrambled to find alternative suppliers as Kyiv’s export ports closed down. Ukraine is the world’s fifth-biggest producer of the commodity, with farmers reaping 41.90 million tons last year.
Moreover, the International Grains Council reduced its 2022/23 world corn production forecast. It slashed its projection by 13.00 million tons to 1.20 billion on Thursday.
Cold weather decelerates corn planting
Furthermore, showers and cool temperatures in South America have slowed the planting progress of corn.
Consequently, analysts anticipated more rain for southern areas of the Midwest this weekend. At the same time, they forecast chilly weather to return next week following a brief warm-up.
Meanwhile, dry conditions have started to advance in Brazil, with 30.00% of the region now in drought. This extreme condition will affect the second corn crop. As of April 15, the country’s first maize output was 79.00%, lower than the prior 74.00% average.
The harsh weather also pushed the prices of other grains. For instance, US wheat futures rose 0.24% or 2.88 points to $1,069.50 per metric ton. Likewise, soybean contracts jumped 0.50% or 9.00 points to $1,755.88 per metric ton.