U.S.D.A. sees 2009 soybean crop up 8%, corn up 5%

by Ron Sterk
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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture in its August Crop Production report forecast 2009 U.S. soybean production at 3,199 million bus, up 240 million bus, or 8%, from 2,959 million bus in 2008 and the largest on record.

Corn production in 2009 was forecast at 12,761 million bus, up 660 million bus, or 5%, from 12,101 million bus last year and the second largest ever behind 2007.

The U.S.D.A. soybean forecast was near the average of pre-report trade estimates while the corn forecast was 2% above the average of expectations.

The average soybean yield based on Aug. 1 conditions was forecast at 41.7 bus an acre, up 2.1 bus from last year. Area for harvest was forecast at 76.8 million acres, up 300,000 acres from June and up 2,200,000 acres, or 3%, from 2008.

Corn yield was forecast at 159.5 bus an acre, up 5.6 bus from last year and the second highest on record behind 2004, the U.S.D.A. said. Harvest area was forecast at 80 million acres, down 100,000 acres from June but up 1,400,000, or 2%, from 2008.

Production of all wheat harvested in 2009 was forecast at 2,184 million bus, up 72 million bus, or 3%, from 2,112 million bus in July but down 316 million bus, or 13% from 2008, the U.S.D.A. said. The U.S.D.A. forecast yield at 43.3 bus per acre, up 1.4 bus from July but down 1.6 bus, or 4%, from 2008.

Winter wheat production was forecast at 1,537 million bus, up 1% from July but down 18% from 2008. Production of hard red winter wheat was forecast at 915 million bus, up 1% from July. Soft red winter production was forecast at 412 million bus, down slightly from July. White winter wheat outturn was forecast at 211 million bus, up 1% from July.

Durum production was forecast at 98 million bus, up 21% from July and up 15% from a year ago. Yield was forecast at 39.9 bus an acre, up 6.8 bus from July and up 7.1 bus from 2008.

Production of spring wheat other than durum was forecast at 548 million bus, up 8% from July and up slightly from a year ago. Outturn of hard red spring wheat was forecast at 511 million bus, up 9% from July.

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