WASHINGTON – The US Dept. of Agriculture at its annual Agricultural Outlook Forum Feb. 21-22 projected lower soybean production in 2019 from 2018 but higher corn outturn, with lower carryover in 2020 from 2019 for both commodities.

The USDA projected 2019 corn production at 14,890 million bushels, up 3.3 percent from the 2018 estimate and the second highest on record if realized as larger planted area more than offset an expected decline in average yield.

Carryover of corn on Sept. 1, 2020, was forecast at 1,650 million bushels, down 4.9 percent from the current year forecast, as lower beginning stocks and higher feed use and exports (forecast at 2,475 million bushels, up 25 million bushels from 2018-19) more than offset higher production. Use of corn for ethanol was projected at 5,575 million bushels, unchanged from the 2018-19 forecast, with projected food and seed use also unchanged at 1,465 million bushels.


The USDA projected 2019 soybean production at 4,175 million bushels, down 8 percent from record outturn of 4,544 million bushels in 2018 and the lowest since 3,927 million bushels in 2015, if realized. Both planted area and average soybean yield were projected lower from 2018.

Total soybean supply in 2019-20 was projected at a record 5,105 million bushels, up 2.1 percent from 5,002 million bushels forecast for 2018-19, which is the current record. But higher domestic soybean use, including forecast record crush at 2,105 million bushels, up 0.7 percent from 5,002 million bushels this year, the current record, and higher projected exports, projected at 2,025 million bushels, up 8 percent from the current year, are expected to reduce soybean carryover on Sept. 1, 2020, to 845 million bushels, down 7 percent from 2019.

“The 2019-20 outlook for US soybeans is for record supplies, higher crush and exports and lower ending stocks,” the USDA said. “Soybean exports for 2019-20 are projected at 2.03 billion bushels, up 150 million from the 2018-19 forecast. With rising global demand and reduced supplies in Brazil this fall, some recovery in US exports is expected despite continued import duties assumed for US soybeans in China.”