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08-12-2013 12:17 PM
Peak corn was and is a big fantasy. I think we are going to prove that with a crop over 13 billion bushel. Just think how big of a crop we might have had if things hadn't been so dicey this spring. As it is with all of the issues we still look poised to come in at 13.5 or better. 12 billion is gone and 11 is in jeopardy? I think not.
08-12-2013 12:42 PM
Certainly there will. Look at 2004 and for the most part 2008. Yes there were localized issues, but by and large weather was excellent producing big yields. There will be years sometime in the near future where weather will cooperate and produce some unbelieveable crops. I'm not disputing the idea that a big crop with depressed prices will potentially lower acreage the following year. I think everyone knows that. What I am saying is that if market conditions dictate the required acres there is the potential to raise bigger crops in the future than we have seen previously. The initial concept of peak corn had nothing to do with acreage being limited by price. The thesis was that we physically could not raise bigger crops because of weather and the idea that we had hit a wall in regards to hybrids and technology. It had nothing to do with acreage being limited by price. That little twist got added in within the last nine months.
08-12-2013 12:55 PM
You have to take this peak corn thing with a "grain of salt", Steve. Pardon the pun!
Peak corn refers to large amount acres of corn grown across different area's of the country. It adds a lot of variability, vs the 80mil top yielding traditional acres.
Therefore you can get more bushels, but you do not achieve the suggested trendline on yields. Adding poorer ground, fringe acres with varying soil types, along with variable weather across the country makes trendline hard to achieve.
When we grow mostly corn on our farms, we get more bushels, but a lower average yield. As ground conditions are not the same on all our farms & neither is the weather. Some ground is better suited to wheat, or other crops besides corn.
The question becomes at what price can you afford to run marginal acres in corn? When cash price is high, and pencil in a lower bu/ac average yield it can work. Other wise might be just as wise to grow something else.
Depending on the number of acres grown, it effects trendline.
All this factors into the idea of peak corn.
08-12-2013 01:05 PM
Even though the concept of a permanent accelerating yield trend that was used to sell the ethanol program was a rural myth, I wouldn't rule out the likelhood of a 175 nat'l yield the next time we have belt wide weather like 2004, 1994 or 1982.
If you don't believe we'll ever have a year like then again (MT) then maybe you believe in climate change but I've taken the liberty of assuming that you don't.