Rich Nelson, chief strategist for ag marketing firm Allendale, reports that their survey this week saw a shift not only in corn, but also in soybean plantings for this season.
“Producers instead of lowering acres have added about a million and a quarter” acres of corn and 1.4 million acres of soybeans”, he said.
That adds up to 91.7 million acres of corn and 85.1 million acres of soybeans, both of which are higher than the USDA’s prospective planting numbers from March and last year’s final acreage numbers.
It’s also more corn acres than other analysts have projected. “The big jump as far as corn was above the northern third of the Corn Belt,” Nelson says. “It was surprising to us was that few acres shifted over in the Dakotas and Minnesota, so the northern areas were very eager to get into the early planting.”
Not all of those acres will prove productive, of course. Given all the rain in many parts of the Midwest, approximately 1 in 10 farmers surveyed said they had taken prevent plant, a figure which Nelson expects to increase by the end of the month.
Meanwhile, The Climate Corporation, a division of Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON), announced that farmers have mapped more than 75 million row crop acres in their digital agriculture platform, up from 50 million acres in 2014. This significant acre adoption represents nearly 45 percent of all corn and soybean acres planted in the U.S. The company’s digital agriculture platform includes Climate Basic™, Climate Pro™ and FieldView® from Precision Planting. The company also announced Climate Pro, their premium web and mobile product offering, has grown considerably from its initial launch from 1 million acres last year to more than 5 million acres this year across the U.S.
Together these tools provide one account with multiple product offerings and access points. The farmer can log in on a tablet from his tractor, on a mobile phone as he scouts his fields, or on his desktop computer.
The company emphasized the importance of farmer adoption to the future success of this emerging platform. “The interest we’ve seen from farmers this year in our digital platform reinforces the impact these tools ultimately can have on our industry,” said Mike Stern, President and Chief Operating Officer for The Climate Corporation. “We want to be the digital platform of choice for farmers, and our growth this year is evidence that we’re well on that path,” said Stern.