Despite a wet spring causing a challenging start to the season, the 2013 corn crop is still looking to break new ground this year, according to the latest USDA production estimate out today.
Corn production is forecast at 13.8 billion bushels, up 28 percent from 2012. If realized, this will be a new record production for the United States. Based on conditions as of August 1, yields are expected to average 154.4 bushels per acre, up 31.0 bushels from 2012. If realized, this will be the highest average yield since 2009. Area harvested for grain is forecast at 89.1 million acres, unchanged from the June forecast but up 2 percent from 2012.
Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) CEO Bob Dinneen says the average yield, which would be the third-highest yield on record, is significant considering farmers had one of the slowest, wettest planting seasons on record. “After the disappointment of last year’s drought-stricken crop, farmers have responded by producing what is likely to be the largest crop of all time,” said RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen. “By rapidly adopting new seed and equipment technologies over the past decade, this country’s corn growers have distinguished themselves as the most productive in the world.”
Brian Jennings, Executive Vice President for the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE), says the quick recovery from last year’s devastating drought shows that the Renewable Fuel Standard is able to work as intended. “The RFS provides an economic incentive for scientists and farmers to innovate and sustainably deliver more corn, enabling the total U.S. corn supply to reach 14.5 billion bushels this year and making room in the market for adequate and affordable food, feed, and fuel,” Jennings said. “Since the RFS was originally enacted in 2005, these advancements have driven U.S. farmers to produce around 20 bushels more corn per acre than before.”
On a global scale, USDA is forecasting that grain production worldwide will hit 2.43 billion metric tons in 2013, up eight percent from last year and a new record.