Once again, USDA’s latest crop progress report, out Monday afternoon and covering the week through September 11, held a variety of planting, crop maturity and harvest data to mine. Of particular note, the agency has officially begun to release corn harvest data while showing a slight decline in quality ratings. Soybean crop quality also unexpectedly tilted a point lower this past week.
Analysts expected corn ratings to hold steady from a week ago, but USDA lowered them a point, leaving 53% of the crop in good-to-excellent condition through Sunday. Another 27% is rated fair (unchanged from last week), with the remaining 20% rated poor or very poor (up a point from last week).
Nearly all (95%) of this season’s corn crop is now at the dough stage, versus a prior five-year average of 96%. Seventy-seven percent is dented (prior five-year average is 79%), and 25% is fully mature (prior five-year average is 30%). Eight of the top 18 production states have made some measurable harvest progress, leading to a national tally of 5%. That’s one point faster than the prior five-year average of 4% so far.
USDA hasn’t offered any soybean harvest updates yet, but that is surely right around the corner. Nearly all (97%) of the crop is now setting pods, versus the prior five-year average of 98%. And 22% is dropping leaves, which is six points behind the prior five-year average of 28%.
As with corn, USDA docked soybean quality ratings a point, with 56% of the crop now in good-to-excellent condition. Another 29% is rated fair (unchanged from last week), with the remaining 15% rated poor or very poor (up a point from last week).
The spring wheat harvest is gaining some momentum, moving from 71% complete a week ago up to 85% as of Sunday. This year’s effort is still slower than 2021’s pace of 95% and the prior five-year average of 89%, however.
Winter wheat plantings made some progress as well, moving from 3% a week ago up to 10% through Sunday. That puts the 2022/23 crop slightly behind 2021’s pace of 11% but remains ahead of the prior five-year average of 7%.
Click here for more data from the latest USDA crop progress report, including updates concerning barley, oats, cotton, rice and more.