America May Currently be Experiencing a Corn Crop Failure

Persistent rain and flooding has left much of the US midwest too wet for planting. It is reported that only 58% of the US corn crop has been planted. In previous years, by now about 90% of the corn crop would have been planted.

The chart below provides a US-wide view of planting progress going back to 1980. Note that the line at the bottom is 2019.

As you can see, planting is way behind previous years.

While Americans aren't avid corn consumers, animal agriculture is highly dependent on corn feed. It is reasonable to assume that a corn shortage will lead to higher meat prices by the fall or winter of 2019. 

Farmers are worried:

"It's rough here with four inches of rain forecasted for tomorrow. We got an inch and a half last night. I do have 400 acres of corn planted so I feel lucky. I know several guys who have none."

"Still haven't planted a single acre yet. And more rain in the forecast. Yay."

"Don't worry. Farmers in the Midwest don't need anyone to tell us the situation. The rest of the country will be suffering food inflation going into an election year. This won't bode well for the status quo politicians.

I live in central Illinois and there is very little corn planted. First it was too cold, we had snow into mid to late April. Then it has been too wet. Yesterday, May 30th was the first day we didn't have flash floods, tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, hail, etc. in many, many days. The rivers have been above flood stage for several weeks."

When farmers worry, I worry.

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