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Grain News – Grain Markets on Fire this Week

WOW!  Grain markets have been on fire this week.  We have seen some swings that have given people the opportunity to sell $8 beans.  Working offers on fall bushels for this year and fall 2019, helps you reach goals.

Soybeans were higher most of the day on reports that China had submitted a written response to the Trump Administration’s demands on trade, something neither country had been willing to do previously. It is a more formal step that could continue the two countries down the road to more intense negotiations. There are also reports that US Trade Representative Lighthizer is becoming more involved and it was even reported that he was telling interested parties that the next round of Chinese tariffs is on hold. He later denied the latter. This all happens amid the backdrop of a planned meeting between Presidents Trump and Xi at the G20 at the end of the month.

The US produced 314 million gallons of ethanol in the week ending 11/9, little changed from the prior week.  This uses approximately 111 million bushels of corn.  Since Sep 1, ethanol production has been running slightly ahead of the seasonal pace implied by the USDA’s 5.65 billion bushels corn-for-ethanol demand projection.

Estimated planting acres for 2019 are going:

  • 92.8 million acres of corn
  • 83.4 million acres of bean
  • 48.9 million acres of wheat

Make sure to get your offerings working for 2018 and 2019 crops.  We have many options available to you. Please call anyone of us and start the discussions.

Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain News – Good Forecast to Wrap Up Week

USDA will release weekly export inspections and harvest progress numbers today with the expectation US harvest will be 92%-95% with a good forecast to wrap it up this week. Although locally it appears we will have more work to do with low spots that will remain in the field until the next prolonged cold temps.

Soybeans are finding some support on news that the US treasury Mnunchin has resumed talks with China. Also talk that China Vice Premier could visit Washington before the G-20 meeting. The White House plans to expand the arsenal of tools being used to combat China trade abuses, including export controls and indictments. Domestically basis has been firming while in South America is off to planting a record amount of soybeans for next year and Brazilian exporters are forecast to sell a record volume of soybeans this year.

Corn basis has firmed as harvest has wrapped up around the country but as corn gets more expensive ethanol margin are getting more negative. Margins in the Western belt are closing in on negative 50c per bushel. It appears with record bean seeding in South America and the prediction of the US farmer to switch to heavy corn acres this spring it is not too early to look at layering in new crop 19 sales. Please contact us to discuss our very attractive HTA option.

Posted in Blog, Grain

Giving kids a view from the field

COTTAGE GROVE, WI, Nov. 9, 2018 – Tractors and combines rolling across the fields in November is part of the scenic fall landscape of central Wisconsin, yet for most kids the view is only seen from a car window, not the window of the cab. Giving young kids the opportunity to see the view from the farmer’s perspective is a joint effort between D&D Olson Farms, Deerfield Elementary School and Landmark Services Cooperative.

For the past 18 years, the Olsons have taken a pause during harvest to provide first graders a view from the field, as they work to bring in the harvest. The students’ joy and excitement expressed during the day fuels the Olson’s motivation to keep the annual traditional going.

“Watching the students’ faces as they patiently wait their turn to ride and their excitement as they wave to their friends from the cab is incredibly rewarding,” Dale Olson says. “We have done this for several years and we have had students come back to us years later and tell us how memorable their day on the farm was. For many, it is the only time they have been around farm machinery. We hope it makes a small difference in the way they view farming when they see us in the fields this time of year.”

Watching the corn stalks fall in front of them and feeling the rumbling of the combine over the field, makes bridging the experience with classroom activities an easy transition for the teachers.

“We extend a huge thank you from Deerfield Elementary first graders and their teachers to D&D Olson Farms, Landmark Services Cooperative and many other sponsors that donated their time and resources for our first graders to combine corn,” expresses Elizabeth Tebon-Moerke, first grade teacher at Deerfield Elementary School. “The excitement and smiles from all the students, teachers and sponsors says it all. Again, thank you to all of those that continue to make this field trip possible.”

The Olson family looks forward to this special day with the students every year to share their passion, experience and knowledge about farming. “We hope the children get as much enjoyment from the field trip as we do,” Marlene Olson says.“They always brighten our day.” After the combine rides, the Olsons present each student with a toy combine keepsake to take home with them.

Along with the Olsons, volunteers from local farm businesses help share the farm story with the students. A message many are passionate to share. “Heading out to the field to help with the Deerfield student combine rides is my favorite day of harvest every year,” says Katie Demrow, Landmark grain marketing specialist. “As the consumer continually gets further away from the farm, helping young students get excited about farming and learning where their food comes from is something I’m very passionate about. Knowing that this may be the first and only time some of these kids will get this on-farm experience is an incredible thing to be a part of and I look forward to continuing on this great tradition the Olsons have started!”

Posted in Landmark News

Grain News – Optimism for Progress

USDA’s November production, supply and demand reports at 11:00 am today.  The trade expectation today is a cut in production for corn.  Average estimates for today’s report, corn yield at 180 bu/acre, with total production at 14.721 billion bushels.  The average guess for corn carryout is 1.773 billion bushels, down from 1.813 billion bushels.

Soybean yields are estimated down from 53.1 to 52.8 bu/acre.  Analysts see soybean ending stocks rising to 898 million bushels as lower exports offsetting the decrease in yield.

The recent tone of President Trump seems friendlier towards China.  There is optimism for progress to come out of upcoming meeting with Chinese President Xi.

Harvest continues to slowly progress, it looks like we will see a break in weather next week.  Forecast for cold and dry.

Let us help you with your marketing decisions.  We offer a variety of marketing options for this year’s crop and looking forward to next years. Contact your grain marketing specialist to help you with your needs.

Continue to be safe as you finish up harvest.

Have a Great Day!

Judy Uhlenhake

Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain News – Election Day Today, Markets Wait for Results

It’s Election Day! Did you know the weather and agriculture industry are both important factors impacting when Election Day took place? In the 1800’s, farmers couldn’t travel until harvest was over, but they wanted to get the vote done before winter set in. Therefore, in 1845, congress set a uniform day of the first Tuesday, after the first Monday in November as the official Election Day.

Markets are softer today with corn and beans closing down slightly. Markets are waiting on mid-term election results, as well as Thursday’s USDA production, supply and demand report. USDA reported a corn sale to Mexico on Monday, however export news today was disappointing.

Corn harvest has now reached 76% complete across the country, while bean harvest is 6% behind average at 83% complete. Rains in the Midwest, Kansas and Arkansas are putting harvest behind in those regions. Many farmers are wondering when they’ll be able to get back in the fields with so much moisture.

Winter wheat ratings improved slightly. Monday’s condition report suggests a yield near 50.6 bushels per acre average, which is higher than the 47.9 bpa that farmers averaged in 2018. If you were able to get wheat in the ground this year, keep your eye on selling opportunities for next year.

As we experience a few rain days locally, now is great time to start crunching numbers and get offers in for your 2019 crop. If we can help, feel free to give us a call!

Posted in Blog, Grain

Encouraging the Leaders of Tomorrow

Applications Now Open for the LSC Scholarship Program
Encouraging the leaders of tomorrow

COTTAGE GROVE, WI, Oct. 30, 2018 – Landmark Services Cooperative (LSC) is excited to announce that applications are now available for high school seniors and current college students to apply for LSC’s 2019 scholarship opportunities.

Once again, LSC will be awarding $750.00 scholarships to fifteen different students. Applications are available on the LSC website at, and completed applications will be accepted through December 1, 2018. Scholarship recipients will be announced later in December, 2018. All Landmark members, employees and their children are eligible to apply for the scholarship program.

The LSC scholarship program was created to recognize and reward success as well as encourage academic, professional and leadership development among post-secondary students.

“We cherish the opportunity to be able to support our area students in pursuing and continuing their education,” says LSC’s CEO and President Jim Dell, “Today’s students are tomorrow’s leaders, and it’s highly rewarding to play a small part in their continued growth and development.”

LSC is committed to building a stronger future for its members and communities, as well as the agricultural industry as a whole. This scholarship program is one of the many ways that LSC aims to give back to its members. Since its first awarded scholarship in 1989, the LSC scholarship program has bestowed a total of $223,350 in scholarships to deserving students.

Posted in Landmark News

Building Better Leaders

Landmark Services Cooperative Board Secretary-Treasurer recognized for achievement in Farm Credit Counseling Services Training

Building better leaders

COTTAGE GROVE, WI, October 31, 2018 – Landmark Services Cooperative (LCS) Secretary-Treasurer of the Board of Directors, Kevin Klahn, was recently recognized for his success in completing the three-year Advanced Governance Series (AGS) training through Farm Credit Counseling Services (FCC Services).

Developed solely for cooperatives, this program incorporates engaging courses and relationship building with industry peers and subject matter experts to instill greater confidence among directors that leads to improved overall board performance. With a focus on relevant issues like the complexities of governance and fiduciary responsibilities, the program’s modules are crafted to target high-impact focus areas for cooperatives.

Over the course of the three-year program, Klahn joined directors from agricultural cooperatives across the nation as part of an AGS membership group. These participants participate in six core modules, each focusing on an area essential to excellence in governance. The modules provide a solid foundation for leadership decision making.

“Attending the FCC Services training was a great learning experience for me,” says Klahn. “Each of the modules keyed in on very pertinent leadership principles and real situations faced by directors. The interaction with peers from other cooperatives across the US was also valuable. I truly appreciated this opportunity.”

Upon completion of this series, Klahn was recognized for his achievements at the October Landmark Services Cooperative Board of Directors meeting. John Blaska, Board Chairman, presented Klahn with an Advanced Governance Series Certificate of Achievement.

The Landmark Services Cooperative Board of Directors was part of a leading group of cooperative board members who helped FCC Services develop this series of board governance training.  Members of the Landmark Services Cooperative Board of Directors take part in FCC Services training throughout the year.

Posted in Landmark News

Grain News – Soybeans Up Over 20 Cents

The grain markets were quiet to start out the 1st day of November until President Trump tweeted that he had a good conversation with the President of China on trade. This pushed soybeans up over twenty cents almost immediately and pulled corn and wheat followed up a bit higher as well. We will see if this price increase can continue as we move forward today and later this week.

The weather forecasts are mixed with some moisture and colder temperatures coming. The next several days however do look like harvest should be able to progress quite well this week. Locally some acres of corn and soybeans are being skipped around due to wet spots in the fields that might take a while to get if ever. Those small spots of a few acres here and there do add up and we will have to see if that affects final harvested acres and yield. Some corn fields have had some yield loss due to wind damage knocking down the stalks.

Export sales were poor again this week with 15.5 million bushel of corn sales well below expectations. The largest buyer of corn was Mexico. Soybean exports were dismal for this time of year at 14.54 million bushels with the largest buyers being Portugal and Argentina. Argentina is buying US soybeans, crushing them and exporting the soybean meal to China. There was several million bushels of Chinese cancellations. More than likely the USDA will have to lower our annual soybean exports some more on upcoming WASDE reports. On the other hand, wheat exports were quite good at 21.4 million bushels.

The next market mover, other than more tweets about China, will be the monthly USDA supply and demand report on November 8th. Most in the trade are expecting a lowering of the corn yield. Many private estimates will come out over the next several days.

As you are finishing up your harvest please remember to let us know what your intentions are for any corn or soybeans that are delivered and on hold at the elevator. You have seven days after your deliveries to decide what you would like to do. Besides just selling or storing you can use tools like basis contracts or minimum price. Give us a call and we can discuss which solution might work best for you.

Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain News – Harvest in Full Swing

Finally, some great weather to get harvest in full swing!  Please make sure to sign up for our grain alerts.  This will keep you up-to-date on hours or special events happening at your delivery location.

The grain market has been having a tough week. The stronger dollar and technical selling has the US out of the export market. Wheat and soybean meal were the big loser on Wednesday pulling corn down and soybean with them.

Corn has been steadier compared to all other grain markets. Ethanol production is up this week to 301 million gallons compared to last week at 297 million gallons. Currently that is 1.4% lower than last year at this same time. Negative ethanol margins are keeping production low and we most likely will not see the normal ramp up in October thru December.

China’s soybean imports from Brazil are up 20% and nearing nothing from the US. According to the Wall Street Journal this morning, US is refusing to resume trade negotiations with China until China comes up with a proposal to address the US concerns about forced technology transfers, along with other issues.  The G-20 Summit is next month, Trump and the Chinese President are still set to meet during this time.

Landmark Services Cooperative offers a variety of marketing options for you grain. You should be contracting corn for fall 2019 and spring 2020. The price builder bonus contract is offering 4.37 board for delivery in Fall 2020. This is a great way to start putting layers out there. Always remember to put offers in for now and the future. Just a final thought, you will be planting your fall ‘19 crop in less than six months!

Be safe and enjoy the great weather!


Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain News – You Are Our Number ONE Commodity

On a positive note the sun is shining, and the combines are rolling through the fields.  The drier forecast and dismal export numbers sent the markets lower today.  Beans were down 2.5% for the day, with corn and wheat down 1%.  Soybeans fell through support at $8.71.  The next support is $8.52.  There are reports small amounts of damage due to weather.

Corn prices also were down due to harvest pressure and bearish export data.  If drier conditions stay drier and harvest pace speeds up that will apply more downward pressure on the market in the near term.  The extended weather maps look wetter so after bean harvest there may be another delay.

Wheat prices continue to move lower on spillover of corn and soybeans.  Wheat export of 18.1 million is behind the weekly rate needed to match USDA forecasts.

It seems like the focus of the market continues to be the large supply and little on the demand side.  Right now, the markets are under extreme harvest pressure and react accordingly.  At some point the market will turn to the demand issues more than the current supplies.

Please take the time to be safe this harvest season.  You are our number one commodity!

Keep in touch with your grain marketing specialist to help you come up with a plan for your unpriced bushels.

Keep up to date on harvest hours and important announcements by signing up text alerts.

Happy Harvest!

Judy Uhlenhake

Posted in Blog, Grain