Some wet weather blew through the Midwest last week, but it wasn’t enough to severely hamper overall harvest progress, according to the latest weekly crop progress report from USDA, out Monday afternoon and covering the week through October 18.
Corn harvest reached 60% completion through Sunday, jumping up from 41% a week ago but slightly behind trade estimates of 61%. Total progress is way ahead of 2019’s pace of 28% and the prior five-year average of 43%. Most of the top 18 production states have at least made it to the halfway mark, with a few notable exceptions that include Michigan (24%), Ohio (24%), Pennsylvania (33%) and Wisconsin (27%).
Nearly all of the crop (97%) is now fully mature, up from 94%. At the same time last year, only 82% was at this physiological stage, with a prior five-year average of 94%.
Quality ratings held steady this past week, with 61% of the crop rated in good-to-excellent condition, which was also in line with analyst expectations. Twenty-five percent of the crop is rated fair, with 14% rated poor or very poor – all unchanged from a week ago.
This year’s soybean harvest is also progressing much more quickly compared to recent years after making it to 75% through October 18, versus 61% a week earlier. Analysts were expecting even more progress, with an average trade guess of 79%. The same time a year ago, harvest was only 40%, with the prior five-year average at 58%.
Most of the 2020 crop (97%) is now dropping leaves, versus 2019’s pace of 91% and the prior five-year average of 95%.
Southern row crop harvests are also moving closer to completion. The 2020 rice harvest is now 91% complete, with cotton at 34% and peanuts at 41%.
The 2020/21 winter wheat crop continues to be planted, meantime. Progress reached 77% this past week, up from 68% a week ago. That’s moderately ahead of the prior five-year average of 72%. There’s quite a bit of variability among the top 18 productions states, ranging from North Carolina (15%) all the way up to Colorado (98%). Just over half (51%) of the crop is now emerged, versus the prior five-year average of 48%.
Click here for updates on additional crops, plus pasture and range conditions.