Grain Exchange

The November 24th USDA weekly crop progress report (which the USDA has decided to extend indefinitely for the 2019 production) shows Wisconsin at 57% complete for corn and 82% on soybeans.  Soybean exports are better than expected.  Corn exports are poor as we are beginning to price more competitive.  US dollar remains strong.

With the US crop inching its way to completion, more questions than answers on trade relations, and disappointing corn exports, markets need more optimistic news.

Wheat does have some strength.  CBOT Sept 20 wheat futures are $5.40 as Argentina is preparing for near record wheat harvest forecasted at 19.4 million tonnes.  There are some questions about this crop size given dryness in some regions.  Wheat outlook has been cut in Ukraine, Russia, Canada and Australia.  Hopefully the strength in wheat futures can spill over and help corn.

Adequate rains are noted in most areas of South America.

Winter storm warnings from California to New Mexico to Northern Wisconsin are in the forecast.  High winds and rains for more southern areas.  We are off to a slow finish for harvest.

Thank you for your business and have a safe and productive harvest.

Feed Troubles May Be Lurking

If going directly from monsoon season to the middle of winter weren’t bad enough, it appears that Wisconsin’s dairy and livestock producers may need to keep their eyes open for something lurking in their feeds: mycotoxins.

For those not familiar with the term, mycotoxins are stable toxic compounds produced by some molds that can accumulate in both the corn grain and the stalk. When eaten, these compounds can lead to a variety of health hazards in livestock and humans, including suppressed intakes, a pronounced drop in milk production, and abortions or other reproductive issues.

This fall’s excess precipitation—further delaying an already late harvest—along with warm days and cool nights, have set the stage for near-perfect growing conditions for several molds in the corn crop. According to several Landmark agronomists, this year’s biggest offenders appear to be Gibberella/Fusarium and Diplodia ear rot, as well as Gibberella and Anthracnose stalk rot.

In terms of potential mycotoxin production, the pink-colored Gibberella/Fusarium molds are likely to cause the biggest issues. These are the molds responsible for vomitoxin (deoxynivalenol or DON), zearalonone, T-2, and fumonisin. In the feed and grain industry, we often use vomitoxin testing as a marker to judge the severity of a mycotoxin issue in the feed.

To be clear, the presence of these molds does not automatically result in high levels of mycotoxins. However, early testing of this year’s corn crop at our grain facilities is showing some instances of highly elevated levels of vomitoxin. Rock River Laboratory in Whitewater also reported elevated vomitoxin levels in some TMR samples from both the Midwest and eastern United States. The graph below is from their October 18, 2019 “Data Distillations” report.

Landmark is working hard to ensure safe feed production for our customers. As a precaution, all loads of corn entering the Landmark Animal Nutrition facilities are being tested prior to dumping to ensure the inventory for feed production remains below 2.0 ppm vomitoxin. Since corn byproducts also tend to concentrate the mycotoxin levels, we’re in regular communication with suppliers regarding their testing and labeling of products. Additionally, in order to preserve the integrity of the marketable corn, Landmark Grain locations are monitoring vomitoxin levels each day. In some cases, we are testing individual loads as well, depending on the overall levels coming into that location.

It’s important to remember that vomitoxin levels alone may not give producers a clear-cut answer on what to expect regarding reduced performance. In many cases, vomitoxin levels do serve as a guide for the overall level of concern we should be taking regarding other mycotoxins. Cattle generally tend to be less susceptible than monogastrics such as swine and poultry. That said, depending on the levels and combinations of mycotoxins in the total diet, serious economic loss can also occur in dairy cattle.

As you begin distributing this year’s feedstuffs to your herd, keep an eye on feed intakes, milk production, overall herd health, and reproductive performance. If you have questions or concerns, be sure to address those with our nutritionist and veterinarian. In many cases, we can provide options to minimize the effects.

And as you wrap up this fall’s harvest and field work, be sure to bring up any mycotoxin concerns with your agronomist. They can help you select more Gibberella-resistant varieties, determine proper crop rotation and nutrient management, and schedule fungicide applications.

Grain Exchange

Grain markets are trading mixed this morning.  Very little news happening to move the market.  The US/China headlines continue to fatigue the market.  There is confidence that a phase one deal will be made but the timing remains in question.

Corn is slightly higher this morning.  Export sales are at 31 mln bu which is in line to meet USDA projected level.  Ethanol margins continue to improve.  Overall conditions on a technical side points to improving price trends during  the next 90 days.

US weekly exports were good for soybeans and soyoil.  Look for choppy trade as the same old US and China trade deal record keeps playing.  The export report was favorable however more sales to China are need to support US soybean projections.

Wheat is slightly lower today.  Export sales were within range.  Current upside potential for wheat is unlikely.  US sales will have to pick up to meet expectations.

Reach out to your Grain Market Specialist, we are here for you.

This has been an extremely challenging crop year from start to nearing the finish line.  Take care of yourself and be safe so you can cross that finish line.

As bad as some days seem remember, there is always, always something to be thankful for.  Thanksgiving reminds us to give thanks and count our blessings.

Happy Thanksgiving,

Judy Uhlenhake

Grain Exchange

Corn and beans traded mostly flat yesterday while wheat fell back after Tuesday’s strong rally up until an afternoon story that indicated more headaches for trade negotiations pressured prices to the daily lows by the close.  The market continues to be pulled and pushed by strong U.S. basis bids and slow harvest progress.

The propane shortage in the upper Midwest is becoming another frustrating layer to this year’s harvest as wet corn and lack of drying capacity are forcing major elevators to work on reduced schedules. Your Landmark energy team is having no issues supplying propane to our dryer and home heat customers due to the foresight months ago, that this was coming and having a plan in place.

President Trump said Tuesday that there are enough Democratic votes in the house to pass the USMCA if they had a vote today and urged the house speaker to push the vote forward.

Renewable fuels associations were losers yesterday in court as a lawsuit filed in May of 2018 challenging EPA’s granting of small-refinery exemptions was dismissed by a federal court.

Be safe out there,

Jim Fleming

Grain Exchange

Crop progress updates will be out today after we recognized our Veterans yesterday.  With cold and snow locally, farmers are doing everything they can to try to get the crop out of the field.  Dryer weather across the US will push harvest along when assessing the Nation’s progress.  Traders expect the US corn harvest to be 65-67% complete vs 52% last week and 84% on average while soybeans harvest completion estimations range from 83-90%.

As this is published, Trump is expected to comment on the US economy as the general tone to trade talks with China has been negative this week.  Chinese crushers continue to look to Brazil for new crop beans as Nationally Brazil has 58% of the crop planted vs the 5-year average of 57%.   The weather outlook for South America has turned favorable providing rains to dryer areas of the country.

Grain Exchange

Markets are quite ahead of USDA supply and demand report on Friday at 11am sharp.  China said it has agreed with the US to cancel tariffs in phases with no timeline.  No location has been announced for the signing of phase one with China.  US is unlikely to put more tariffs on for December 15th.   Also, in other China news, China’s Cabinet said they will build 165 million acres of high-quality farmland by 2022.

Soybeans are currently slightly higher this morning.  Yesterday the news that had beans trading down was Brazilian Real was dramatically weaker.  South America is seeing some rains and the Argentina area being drier.  Exports were much larger than expected with sales to China.  Markets are looking for a slight reduction in yield for beans tomorrow to 46.6 vs last month at 46.9 bushels per acre.

Corn exports were in line, but weak.  South Korea was rumored to have purchased 65,000 metric tons.  The market is looking for reduced yield tomorrow to 167.5 vs last month at 168.4 bushels per acre.  Weather does not seem to concern the market at this point.

With any report day, make sure to have offers in place and working.  A quick spike in the market happens often on report days.  Please make sure to be safe on the farm.  Slow down and take time needed to shut down equipment before doing repairs.

Make sure and enjoy the sun today!

Grain Exchange – Extended Hours Available

The sun is finally starting to show and the hopefully that means farmers are able to be in the fields.

US weekly crop progress was released yesterday the results are as followed:

  • Soybeans were 75% harvest vs 62% a week ago, still below 5 year average at 87%
  • Corn was 52% harvested vs 41% last week, still behind the 5 year average at 75%
  • Corn maturity is at 96% mature vs 93% last week, behind the 5 year average at 100%
  • Winter wheat is 89% planted, 71% emerged which is better than last year.

Corn ended down 2 which was surprising because the corn harvest was expected to be further along than where it is. It seems that yields have been better than expected.

Beans ended down 4, still no deal with China which was expected be almost completed by now. There is chatter that the UDSA could be lowering yield on Friday so there could be some potential in beans.

Wheat it up 5, so there is a least some positive in the market.

As inclement weather is approaching please stay safe. If you need extended hours to beat the snow please contact your local grain office.