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Veteran Contributor

Drought

I keep hearing damage being done by the heat and drought but what is real damage to the crop. I come from wheat country when we have drought damage and heat damage were talking where crop becomes like half or more loss in yield yet we hear on corn it going to just a few bushel less in yield. I see some the posts that crop is toast yet were talking only few bushels loss in trend line yields. I guess if it's damaging the corn crop like some are saying I like realistic estimate of the damage. If the damage is like being r eported here I would guess the corn crop would be heading for 10. To 9 billion crop or less. If truly this crop is burning up we should be getting some sobering numbers in next few days. I guess I want someone to say what damage is now not what it could be and report actual damage loss as it happens. I get frustrated about the reports each year and then when final outcome is only a few percentage of loss of yield where I come from we only start to talk a out yield loss when our crop insurance is starting to become involved in yield loss which is usually 25 to 35 per ent loss.
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22 Replies
Senior Contributor

Re: Drought

"yet we hear on corn it going to just a few bushel less in yield". Who is telling u this. Two of the big 5 corn states are In jeopardy of being south of 100bpa. Southern il is gone. They are mowing corn over hoping for a rain for a chance at beans. If this thing moves northwest than we are sub 130 nationally. Maybe we are there already...
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Honored Advisor

Re: Drought

Ag?,

It sound like you are unfairly comparing local losses with national averages.

The corn producing area is so big that a diseaster(like southern areas had last year) in one state(of say 70% loss) might just take 5 or 10 bushels off the national average.

The trick this year was that we had a fair amount of bad losses last year in areas that have not healed yet.------areas have 6 more inches than last year and are still 6 inches below an average year.  That just means nothing has changed for them.  But the heart of the drought has moved north and east to take in new territory and it is going to have an accumulative effect this year.

A friend went through Iowa friday from KC to Lacrosse, Wisc. and reported that they are not hurt yet in "wheat" country terms.  

With corn it is hard to see the smaller yield reductions.  Just being behind on rain can trim 25-40 bushels off the yield and not show from the road much.  When it gets hot enough to flash leaves and dry enough to tassel at 5 ft or less (see it from the road), 200 bushel corn heads for 60 or less bushel real fast.

So the "over the cliff" losses can be extreme locally, but most of the comments on here are discussing national average changes.  And national average is always counting on 2-4 big states with strong yields.

I am wondering if there are going to be any states in the above average area this year.

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Honored Advisor

Re: Drought

One other thing Ag-?,

 

A marketing site is even more distorting than yields and ratings.  

Marketing is individual and local.  Producers market product.  After that product is traded.

 

Futures are what trading is based on.  Marketing has much more to do with the producers individual cituation.  Costs of production, delivery location options, local basis, storage options, Risk comfort levels, financial strength, feeding options all have more effect on a marketing plan than national average or acerage predictions.

A marketers first questions are 1) What are my costs? 2) Is there a profit margin at the price offered today?  3) What precentage of profit will I accept to prepare me for the future?  

When a marketer has a grip on those (ever changing) questions, he(or she) will work on the easy stuff like the trends of price, supply, and world exports.

Traders don't have to worry about anything except what direction is the market going.  They would like to think they make money either way.   I think of them as the "entertainment" or "class clowns".

 

Marketing can be a "bean counter" boring enterprise.  But if your good at it the entertainment will keep trying to sell you their services.(if they made money both ways they wouldn't need clients.)  

The "future guessing reports" are mostly for the "entertainment"  The actual data inventory, sales, exports, terminal inventories, etc. are for the marketers.   

Crop condition reports are gray area till the last half of the season.

 

 

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Contributor

Re: Drought

I think I understand what you are saying.  I don't understand how they can have only 48% of the corn rated good to ex. in the nation but still hold on to a 160 bu. av.  If these were small producing states then that theory might be possible but when it's in the heart of the corn belt that brings up serious questions.  I think they are hoping there is still potential for the crop in case of a rain.  This wk. should be the decision maker for most of the corn as it will either have kernels or not or whether it has an ear or not.  Walked into some fields in N/C mo. and found blank cobs with some having up to 7 kernels on the whole cob.  What will that yield? 

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Drought

 
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Honored Advisor

Re: Drought

WCMO, 

Wheat is like Palouser has said,  produced in a lot of places worldwide and locally.

In the US we have the breadbasket from Salina, ks to Enid, ok.  and another in Washington state.  We have huge production in the north and lots of bushels coming out of a line from Amarillo, Tx to western Neb. that can match the others with irrigation and snow.  It israised most everywhere else in smaller quantities.  The central valleys of California will roll out a lot of wheat if the price is right.

That is pretty diversified, and the risk of drought is low for all of those at once.  And shorter answer-----it's spread out.

Corn in Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio are not spread out.  Drought seldom happens there, but when it does we are very vulnerable to a crop that is not replaceable on the world trade in the quantities we use it.

Once again I want to say thank you for that drought history post.  I am still studying it.  Lots to learn there.

You are right with your description of corn vulnerability.  We test it pretty hard out west even though it is irrigated, there are limits to the heat it will take and in what stages.

The beauty of the corn states is they have enough average annual rainfall, the maps say, they will bounce back fast as the moisture returns.  The more arid fringe like us can have the droughts for 2-3 years before we get past the damage.

-----

It is also difficult to judge damage by the complaining.  Some of us have a pretty low drought tollerance.  But when we are recording records that are over 100 years old------usda should be paying attention--------and the rest of us.

 

MSpencer,  I agree, 

I think they are still probably 10 to 25 bushels too high on last years crop.  And "hoping there is still potential" is a good description of the usda projections so far.   

When usda came out with their "farm storage" bushels on carry over, The feeders out here were telling me they had stopped buying corn because it was not available, even on the trains from corn country.  Wheat is being fed in several yards and will continue to be till there is a crop of corn.


 

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Drought

Ag-? I have posted pictures of my own crop which is on heavy clay soil and looks better than average for my area. I will take a picture of what things really look like here soon. Most corn here has given up the fight over the last couple days. I am located a mile north of the Indiana line and things don't get much better to my south. We are in a historical drought here. "1988 was never this bad" is what I am hearing from long time farmers in this area. I hope Iowa and Minnesota can produce a big crop this year because there are parts of Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and western Ohio that will be wiped out by the end of the week.... As one poster mentioned, these acres will be irreplaceable.

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Drought

Did anyone read the 6/26 article on farmdocdaily, "Where should we be with yield", by Mr. Good & Irwin? They did a great exercise using the crop prog from 6/25 exploring possibilities of yield loss. Found it really interesting that there were 72% more acres experiencing very poor cond than in those states exp very favorable conditions. I did a little ROUGH math based around their analysis then & came up w/ about 23-25% below trendline which, interestingly roughly = % below trend in '83 & '88 - put us in the mid 120's THEN. Since that report, the heat & lack of moisture ramped up.

    If you get creative, as chartists can be, draw a trendline across the lows from' 73 & '88 on the trendline graph from that article & it comes in around 105 for this year - trendlines on charts are usually touched 3 times. After watching  the baking going on in Ia, Ne, IL since then, just imagining some extra premature pollen shed (PPS) going on, particularly in Ia - perhaps mkts tipping point.  

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Drought

Also, as the article indicates, drought impacts are not linear. Would be suprised if 7/9 progress report - good - very good conditions do not go down more than 8 pts (prev week)/ down 7 before that. When's last time crop progress (corn) was below 40 by 2nd week July?

 

Perhaps, too mkt will have to pay for the "phantom supplies" on this rally. almost like unpaid debt coming back to bite you b/c your bounty to pay back debt never came. The USDA will have much less product to hide behind and the mkt knows it.

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