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May WASDE sees U.S. corn crop down by 4.3%

The World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates are the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s first projections for the 2022-23 crop year.

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WASHINGTON — In the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s first projections for the 2022-23 crop year, U.S. corn production is expected to drop 4.3% from last year amid a slow start to planting, while winter wheat production in the southern Plains states is at historic lows.

USDA released its World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates on Thursday, May 12, showing reduced yields for corn, as major corn producing states have been beset by cool, wet weather.

The corn yield is projected at 177 bushels per acre, 4 bushels below what USDA estimated in its Agricultural Outlook Forum in February. The corn crop is projected at 14.5 billion bushels, down 4.3% from 2021-22.

The average price farmers can expect to receive for corn is projected at $6.75 per bushel, up 85 cents from a year ago. If it hits that mark, it would be the highest since $6.89 reached during the 2012-13, crop year, according to the USDA report.

Corn exports and feed use are expected to decline, but with total U.S. corn supply falling, 2022-23 U.S. ending stocks are projected down 80 million bushels from last year.


World corn production is projected down 34.9 million tons from 2021-22. The U.S. accounts for about half that amount, with declines in war-torn Ukraine also a significant factor.

Ending stocks are forecast down, led by reductions in China and the United States.


For winter wheat, drought in Texas and other southern Plains states is leading to the lowest harvested-to-planted ratio for winter wheat since 2002.

Texas will have the largest number of non-harvested acres on record.

But improved crops in South Dakota and the Northwest will keep winter wheat production at about 2020 levels, though down from 2021. Idaho is poised to become the No. 4 winter wheat producing state, having never been higher than No. 5 in the past.

Global wheat production is forecast at 775 million tons, down 4 million from the previous year. The largest cut to production is in Ukraine, with a crop one-third smaller than in 2021.


USDA expects to see a 5% increase in soybeans, mostly on higher planted acres. It also expects to see higher exports and ending stocks.

There is expected strong demand for soybean oil as new biofuel plants come online.


The project price of $14.40 per bushel is up $1.15 over last year.


Planting is behind in sugarbeet growing areas of the upper Midwest, and beet production is down 85 tons from the April 8 estimate and down 254 tons from 2021-22.

U.S. sugarbeet production for 2022-23 is projected at 33.652 million tons with yield forecast at 30.23 tons per acre with 1.113 million of harvested acres.

Reach Jeff Beach at jbeach@agweek.com or call 701-451-5651 (work) or 859-420-1177.
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Speculation of escalating war between Russia and Ukraine and Russia not allowing further exports out of Ukraine at the end of the month played a roll in the markets this week, as did early harvest results.