Corn Planting Progress Higher Than Expected 

Good Morning from Allendale, Inc. with the early morning commentary for April 28, 2020.

Grain Markets slid lower testing recent contracts lows in corn and soybean futures as energy prices continued to apply downward pressure.  Wheat futures were also lower on fears of increasing global supplies.  Traders will also focus on how soon meat packing plants can restore normal production.

President Trump said China could have stopped the coronavirus before it swept the globe and said his administration was conducting “serious investigations” into what happened.  “We’re doing very serious investigations.  We are not happy with China.  There are a lot of ways you can hold them accountable.  We believe it could have been stopped at the source. It could have been stopped quickly and it wouldn’t have spread all over the world,” Trump added.

USDA Weekly Crop Progress Report showed corn planting at 27% complete (22% expected, 7% last week, 12% last year, 20% average).  Soybean planting at 8% complete (8% expected, 2% last week, 2% last year, 4% average).  Hard red Spring wheat planting at 14% complete (18% expected, 7% last week, 11% last year, 29% average).  Winter wheat conditions at 54% GTE (57% expected, 57% last week, 64% last year).  

USDA weekly grain export inspections showed corn exports at 1,078,000 tonnes (800,000 to 1,100,000 expected), soybean exports at 556,000 tonnes (300,000 to 600,000 expected) and wheat exports at 501,000 tonnes (400,000 to 650,000 expected).

South America weekly crop progress report showed Brazilian soybean harvest progress at 94% complete (92% last week, 92% 5-year average).  Brazil 1st corn crop harvest progress at 81% complete (77% last week, 76% last year, 82% average).

Ukraine will not limit corn exports, the APK-Inform agriculture consultancy said. They said the government could limit exports to 29.3 million tonnes this season.  Ukraine has exported 25.2 million tonnes of corn so far this season, 2.7 million tonnes more than this time last season.

Hog farmers nationwide will lose an estimated $5 billion, or $37 per head, for the rest of the year due to pandemic disruptions, according to the industry group National Pork Producers Council.  Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds, along with both state senators sent a letter to the Trump administration pleading for financial help and assistance with culling animals and properly disposing of their carcasses.  “There are 700,000 pigs across the nation that cannot be processed each week and must be humanely euthanized,” said the letter.

USDA said it is establishing a National Incident Coordination Center to help farmers find markets for their livestock or euthanize and dispose of animals if necessary.  “Millions of pigs, chickens and cattle will be euthanized because of slaughterhouse closures, limiting supplies at grocers,” said John Tyson, chairman of Tyson Foods.

According to USDA, daily slaughter last week averaged 364,600 head for hogs and 85,200 head for cattle (down 26% and 29%, respectively from the same week last month). Compared with the same week last year, this is a 22% decline for hogs and a 29% fall for cattle.

Dressed beef values were higher with choice up 18.47 and select up 19.76. The Feeder cattle index is 119.48. Pork cut-out values were up 6.23.

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