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USDA REPORTS CORN, SOYBEAN CONDITIONS CONTINUE TO DECLINE
DTN reports:

OMAHA -- The U.S. corn crop's good-to-excellent rating fell last week due to significant rating declines for several major corn-producing states, USDA NASS said in its weekly Crop Progress report on Monday.

NASS estimated that 64% of the nation's corn crop was in good-to-excellent condition as of Sunday, Aug. 23, down 5 percentage points from 69% and now the fifth-highest good-to-excellent rating in the past 10 years.

"Good-to-excellent ratings in Michigan fell 11 points, Iowa was down 9 points, Nebraska was down 7 points and South Dakota was down 6," said DTN Lead Analyst Todd Hultman.

Meanwhile, corn development stages remained roughly in line with five-year averages. Eighty-eight percent of corn was in the dough stage as of Sunday, 6 percentage points ahead of the five-year average of 82%, and 44% of the crop was dented, 5 percentage points ahead of the average of 39%. Corn mature was estimated at 5%, ahead of 2% at the same time last year but equal to the five-year average.

Like corn, soybean conditions also declined again last week. NASS estimated that 69% of the nation's soybean crop was in good-to-excellent condition as of Aug. 23, down 3 percentage points from 72% the previous week but still the third-highest rating in at least 10 years.

"Good-to-excellent ratings in Michigan and South Dakota were down 10 points each, Iowa was down 6 points and Nebraska was down 5 points," Hultman said.

Soybean development was also running at a near-normal pace. Soybeans setting pods was estimated at 92%, 5 percentage points ahead of the five-year average of 87%. Soybeans dropping leaves was estimated at 4%, equal to the five-year average.

Winter wheat harvest moved ahead another 4 percentage points last week to reach 97% complete as of Sunday, just 1 percentage point behind the average pace of 98%.

"Montana and Washington are 82% done compared to the average of 90%-91%, while Idaho is 83% complete, just below the average of 88%," said DTN Senior Analyst Dana Mantini.

Spring wheat harvest jumped ahead 19 percentage points to reach 49% complete as of Sunday. That was well ahead of 32% at the same time last year but still 13 percentage points behind the five-year average of 62%.

"Spring wheat harvest progress in North Dakota is the slowest, at 39% harvested versus a five-year average of 59%, and Minnesota is now 54% done compared to the average of 69%," Mantini said.

USDA estimated that 71% of the spring wheat crop still in fields was in good-to-excellent condition, up 1 percentage point from the previous week. There was a gain of 1 percentage point in the excellent category to 13%.

"Sixty-three percent of the spring wheat crop in North Dakota is rated good to excellent, down 2 percentage points from last week," Mantini said. "Minnesota is still highly rated at 77% good to excellent."


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