Where will we put all the grain

The major market advisory services have begun releasing their corn and soybean crop estimates, along with projected carry-outs for the coming years. The most widely followed projection is the ProFarmer tour which was recently completed.

All projections are for a very large US corn and soybean crop. Something seldom mentioned when talking about these large crops is storage – where will we put all of the corn and soybeans? Especially for corn, this has implications for grain quality for next spring and summer swine diets.

At least in this region, I think a lot of crop will end up ‘on the ground’. The reason for this thinking – local collection points (country elevators) are getting full of old crop corn. Over the past few weeks I’ve seen a lot of lines at these delivery points as farmers clean out on-farm storage in anticipation of harvest storage needs. While I’ve seen a few unit trains being loaded with corn, the delivery lines have been more than sufficient to refill local commercial storage.

I think the same is true of ethanol plants – long lines of delivery vehicles. Long lines have also been noted at the 2 soybean processing plants in Mankato (ADM and CHS).

I have also been interested in the very large number of grain semi’s on the roads the past few weeks, a further indication of the intensity of grain movement from on-farm to off-farm storage and/or sales.

A final indication of upcoming storage issues – there are still some ‘piles’ of last years corn remaining. I saw some in mid-August as I drove the upper Midwest and I had producer reports yet this week of localized piles remaining.

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