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Corn+Soybean Digest

Rains Boost U.S. Crop Ratings

U.S. corn and soybean conditions improved last week as favorable rains boosted crops across western and northern parts of the Midwest, but crop development continues to lag well behind normal following a cool weekend.

Monday afternoon’s weekly crop update from USDA rated U.S. corn conditions 70% good/excellent as of Sunday, up 2 percentage points from a week earlier and 6 percentage points from a year earlier.

U.S. soybean conditions were rated 69% good/excellent, up 3 percentage points from a week earlier and 8 points from a year earlier.

The percentage of the U.S. corn crop that had reached the dough stage was put at 57%, up from 40% a week earlier, but behind 66% a year earlier and the five-year average of 79%.

The portion of the corn crop that had begun denting was pegged at 18%, compared with 25% a year ago and the average of 43%.

USDA reported that 85% of the U.S. soybean crop was setting pods as of Sunday compared with 86% last year and an average of 92%.

Corn conditions in the top-producing state of Iowa were rated 79% good/excellent, up from 77% a week earlier, but only 49% of the state’s crop had reached the dough stage against a five-year average of 72%, and 10% had reached the dent stage against an average of 34%.

In the No. 2 corn state of Illinois, corn conditions slipped slightly to 61% good/excellent from 62% a week earlier, and crop development remained far behind normal with only 12% of the state’s crop having reached dent stage against an average of 58%.

The biggest weekly improvement in corn conditions was noted in Kansas, where 71% of the crop was rated good/excellent as of Sunday, up 10 percentage points from a week earlier after very favorable rains.

Iowa soybean conditions also improved to 79% good/excellent from 77% a week earlier, while Illinois conditions held stable at 60% good/excellent

The portion of the soybean crop rated good/excellent also rose by 2 percentage points in Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota and Indiana. As with corn, the biggest jump in soybean conditions came in Kansas, where the portion of the crop rated good/excellent jumped 9 percentage points from a week earlier to 68% good/excellent.

Editor’s note: Richard Brock, Corn & Soybean Digest's marketing editor, is president of Brock Associates, a farm market advisory firm, and publisher of The Brock Report.

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