US Weather And Crop Impact

A beneficial weather outlook for the week ahead has been one of the main factors driving prices lower over the last few sessions. US weather analyst Gail Martell of Martell Crop Projections has got this to say about weather prospects and the likely impact on crop development this week:

Corn and soybeans: Wetter Midwest forecast

A couple waves of showers are expected this week that will greatly improve field moisture for soybeans and corn, a welcome welcome change from the dryness of the past 3-4 weeks. Showers doused key corn states Iowa, Minnesota and Nebraska on the weekend. Soybeans are in the midst of the critical pod setting and filling stage and would benefit most from drenching rains. Corn is advancing rapidly from kernel-filling into the dough stage after a week of very warm temperatures.

Beneficial rain over the weekend: Western Corn Belt states Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and Minnesota were hit with strong thunderstorms Saturday that boosted field moisture. Most rainfall amounts were .5-1.5 inches but locally 2 inches of rain occurred. Thunderstorms fired up again Sunday along a slow moving front in Kansas, northern Missouri and northern Illinois, but showers petered out in Indiana and Michigan last night. See the accumulated August rainfall map (attached). The Monday-Wednesday rainfall is expected to be heaviest in a band from Kansas to Illinois, as this slow moving front grinds south and east across the Midwest. See the attached 3-day forecast outlook.

Heavy rain a possibility late in week: Additional strong thunderstorms may develop again later this week in the Midwest when another strong Canadian trough drops into the Midwest, reinforcing and strengthening the initial trough. The European Model (see attached map) indicates a very wet pattern for late this week, especially if tropical moisture from Claudette is entrained into the trough. The GFS model sees a less-wet forecast on Day 5 (Friday). If we believe the European Model, Mid South soybeans would get drenching rain, along with the Midwest.

Spring Wheat: Dampness stalling harvest

Damp conditions are slowing down grain drying and stalling harvesting in North Dakota and Western Minnesota, and the forecast is ominous for more of the same. Thirty percent of ND wheat was still green on August 16th, which is at least 2-3 weeks behind schedule. North Dakota wheat ratings are impressive, 88% good-excellent and only 2% poor, but getting the crop harvested is proving to be very difficult due to delayed maturity and persistent dampness. Warm and dry weather may not resume until the weekend. The USDA say that only 3% of ND wheat was harvested August 16, well behind the 43% five year average.