New projections from the U.S. Department of Agriculture show farmers may shift toward planting more soybeans this year after years of record corn profits. The forecast calls for a six-percent increase in soybean planting compared to 2013, while this year’s corn crop would be the smallest since 2010. Market analyst Dale Durchholz of AgriVisor says crop changes may not be consistent across the corn belt. In Iowa, for example, planting may be delayed by frozen ground.
“With spring not coming early this year, you really wonder, will we really see plantings going up? Will it be corn or will it be beans? I think it could, as much as anything, maybe be beans a little bit,” Durchholz said.
The USDA predicts Iowa farmers will plant roughly 14 million acres of corn this year, an increase of 400,000 acres from this time in 2013. Iowa farmers are expected to boost soybean plantings by 300,000 acres to 9.6 million acres.