Next week the USDA will make its first forecast of corn and soybean production based on some actual surveys of fields and farms, but the cool summer in many major crop areas and slow development of crops because of it may make the job of forecasting more difficult than it normally be this time of year.
"I think for the Midwest the hardest thing will be getting a handle on the soybeans because in some cases we're still blooming and not yet setting pods and that's going to be tough to get an actual pod count," said USDA Meteorologist Brad Rippey. "For the corn we already know the number of ears so it's just a matter of how the ears fill out, so I think for corn it is pretty cut and dried."
Rippey says the most problems ascertaining the soybean crop will be in the latter planted areas of the Upper Midwest, the Ohio River Valley and the Southern Corn Belt. USDA is releasing the August Crop Report Wednesday, Aug. 12 at 7:30 a.m. CDT.