PUBLISHED BY SOYBEAN GROWERS FOR THE FEED INDUSTRY
DECEMBER 2012
In the December U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) crop production summary report, soybean production is being estimated to be 2.971 billion bushels. This value is down about four percent from the previous soybean crop. Total soybean production has dropped below three billion bushels only twice since 2004 and this year’s crop is one of the smallest in a decade.

The average soybean yield in 2012 is estimated at 39.3 bushels per acre which is 2.6 bushels below last year’s yield. The area planted for soybeans in 2012 was 77.2 million acres and harvested acres were estimated at 75.7 million acres. The soybean production values for the 2012 crop year was significantly below average last year’s crop, but much improved over mid-summer estimates of the crop.

The U.S. soybean crush is estimated to be lower than the previous crop years and soybean exports are slightly increased. Over all use of soybean meal is reduced significantly from the previous crop years. Both soybean meal use domestically and exports are estimated to be reduced in 0212/2013 due to the increased soybean meal price. Soybean meal prices continue to increase and the estimated meal price will average between $455 and $485 this year.

The higher prices for soybeans are having a major impact on soybean and soybean meal exports and domestic use of soybean meal. The significantly higher soybean meal and corn prices, since soybean meal and corn are major ingredients used by the feed industry, is significantly increasing feed costs and reducing livestock and poultry enterprise profits. The higher prices are limiting feed use of soybean meal.

Chart1

(*) Marketing year beginning September 1 for soybeans and October 1 for meal; (**) Estimates and
(***) projections at this time.

Reference: U.S.D.A. Economic Research Service, World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates; WASDE-513, December 11, 2012.


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