USDA: record high soybean production in 2018


By John Perkins, Brownfield

February 8, 2019


The USDA says U.S. soybean production in 2018 was a new all-time high. The soybean crop totaled 4.544 billion bushels, less than the previous projection following a reduction in average yield because of a late slowdown in harvest, but still up 3% from 2017. 2018ís average yield was 51.6 bushels per acre, compared to 49.3 the year before. Record yields were achieved in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Mississippi, New York, and Ohio. Planted area was 89.196 million acres, compared to 90.162 million in 2017, while harvested area was 88.110 million acres, compared to 89.542 million the previous year.


Corn totaled 14.420 billion bushels, down 1% on the year, with the average yield of 176.4 bushels per acre slightly below the 2017 record of 176.6, also affected by late slowdown in harvest. Arizona, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska, Ohio, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming all reported record high average yields. Planted area was 89.129 million acres, compared to 90.167 million the year before, and harvested area was 81.740 million acres, compared to 82.733 million in 2017.


Spring wheat came out at 623.232 million bushels, compared to 415.851 million in 2017, with an average yield of 48.3 bushels per acre, compared to 41.0 the prior year. Idaho and North Dakota both notched new highs for average yield. Planted area was 13.2 million acres, compared to 11.019 million the year before, and harvested area was 12.896 million acres, compared to 10.148 million in 2017.


2019 winter wheat planted area was pegged at 31.29 million acres, 4% less than in 2018 because of the harvest delays and generally slow demand for U.S. wheat on the export market. By type, hard red winter was reported at 22.2 million acres, a decline of 3%, with soft red winter at 5.66 million acres, 7% lower, and white winter totaled 3.44 million acres, down 3%. Record low acreage was reported in Nebraska, New Jersey, Ohio, and West Virginia.


2019 prospective planting estimates for corn and soybeans are scheduled for the end of March but could be pushed back by another government shutdown. Funding for the federal government runs out February 15th...