Initial FBN Soybean Yield Forecast: Near the Record

The 2020 growing season has had a mostly ideal start. Mostly favorable weather is keeping the U.S. soybean condition rating above average for key states, with North Dakota being the exception. It is still early in the growing season with none of the following states reporting being in the blooming stage. 

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FBN’s first model-based assessment of the U.S. soybean yield puts the crop at 51.5 bushels per acre.

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That’s above USDA’s latest forecast of 49.8 bushels but would be shy of the record for the U.S. set in 2016 of 51.9 bushels.

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Variables included were yield trend, USDA crop condition ratings, and temperature and precipitation so far this growing season. Early planting combined with a warm June has helped with good crops so far, but precipitation will be key going forward. 

Another variable in the model was the percentage of crops rated in poor to very poor condition. Iowa, Minnesota and South Dakota have less than 2 percent of their crops in the poor to very poor ranking. But, Indiana, Illinois and Ohio each have more than 6 percent.

Dryness has eased somewhat in the western Corn Belt, but there are areas scattered across the region that would welcome moisture, including the southwest corner of Iowa and parts of Minnesota and North Dakota. But the crop is not yet blooming across the Corn Belt. The current situation is overall favorable, but weather will become increasingly important in the coming weeks.

FBN's take on what it means for the farmer

Despite above-average condition ratings and a boost in planted area versus the March report, the price outlook for beans remains overall positive. Stocks are moving in the right direction with the demand side of the balance sheet expected to be positive this upcoming crop year.

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