USDA Releases December Oil Crops Outlook

USDA’s monthly Oil Crops Outlook for December reduced Brazil’s production forecast for marketing year 2023/24 by 2.0 million metric tons to 161.0 million metric tons on lower yield.

Yield is forecast at 3.53 metric tons per hectare, down one percent from last month’s forecast and two percent below last year’s record yield. Harvested area is forecast at a record 45.6 million hectares, unchanged from last month and up 1.3 million hectares from last year. The shrinking prospects for Brazil’s soybean production have increased the value of U.S. soybeans. In November, soybean cash prices at country elevators in Central Illinois increased by $0.68 per bushel to $13.08 per bushel.

Throughout the country, cash prices rallied above $13.00 per bushel by the middle of November and then prices declined to an average of $12.67 per bushel in the first week of December. Despite the gains, the forecast for average soybean price received by farmers for 2023/24 is unchanged this month at $12.90 per bushel as prices have begun to decline in December.