From corn to wheat to cotton, farmers across the country have already begun to plan out their crops for a new year of growing. Their plans and schedules will also need to include the care and maintenance of heavy-duty farm machinery, including cotton mill components in Lubbock, TX, to ensure planting and a quality harvest later in the season. Now, what does the 2019 planting season look like so far? What is it shaping up to be like? For starters, low prices and tariffs could shift focus to wheat and corn crops. Let’s take a look at some must-knows of the 2019 planting intentions outlook.
Farmers don’t just wake up one day and start planting. They need a plan, but the options and choices for 2019 crops are not many. This year is said to be dominated by trade disputes, good yields and low prices, but the choices may seem easy to growers following national and international industry headlines:
- Soybean: China’s 25 percent tariff on certain United States imports like soybeans contributed to the pummeling of product prices headed into the harvest season—and a record soybean crop didn’t help the market. This led to plans to trim seedings by two million acres this spring, which amounts to a decrease of 2.3 percent.
- Corn: The reduced acres in soybeans shifted to corn crops. Growers are looking at better price prospects for corn in 2019, giving hope that corn seedlings can rise by 1.7 million up to 90.8 million acres, which is an increase of slightly under 2 percent compared to spring 2018. Another thing to keep in mind is weather problems overseas. Less favorable weather tightens global corn stocks, creating repercussions that also hurt wheat production in other exporting countries.
- Wheat: Weather problems in overseas countries can damage all sorts of crop production, including wheat. Look at the summer of 2018—winter wheat futures contributed to a brief price rebound; however, this appeared to bring more land into crop production when growers seeded their fields in the fall.
- Winter wheat: Last year, a survey showed that farmers were ready to put in 33.6 million acres of winter wheat, up by 850,000 (an increase of 2.6 percent) from the year prior. Farmers noted they would seed around 4 percent more hard red and soft red winter wheat, while at the same time planned to reduce white wheat acreage. But this reduction was due in part to the dry conditions in the Pacific Northwest. Moisture is better for many winter wheats. As such, spring 2018 wheat prices were dragged downward.
- Cotton: There are high prospects for cotton growers in 2019. Last year, cotton growers celebrated the strong cotton market, most in part due to high abandonment of fields on the Southwest Plains that cut other crop productions. And if moisture levels continue to improve this year, the result could be more fields producing abundantly in 2019. The survey puts cotton seedings at 13.8 million acres.
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