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Friday, August 29, 2014

Child Safety on the Farm

There are very few things more heart warming than a funny photo of a child 'farming'. Whether that be sitting on equipment or feeding animals or some other common activity thousands of adult farmers do daily.  

However, thousands of children are injured and hundreds are killed every year by hazards found on the farm. Some of these children are working on the farm while others wander into trouble on their own or are invited into hazardous areas. Implement injury prevention strategies today to protect agriculture's greatest resource, and the next generation of farmers, our children.
•    Do not allow children to roam freely on the farm. Design a fenced "safe play area." This area should be near the house and away from work activities.
•    Inspect your farm on a regular basis for hazards that can injure children wandering on your farm. Correct obvious hazards immediately.
•    Children who are physically able to be involved in farm work should be assigned age-appropriate tasks and continually trained to perform them. They should also be constantly supervised.
•    Equip all barns, farm shops, chemical storage areas, livestock pens, etc. with latches that can be locked or secured so that children cannot enter.
•    Always turn equipment off, lower hydraulics and remove the key before leaving equipment unattended.
•    Do not expose children to hazards. Never carry them on tractors and equipment or invite them into the farm shop, livestock barns, grain bins, etc.

Together we can! ensure the next generation of farmers are safe.

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/29/2014


AM Comments 8/29/2014

Friday, August 29, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Joel Pudenz

We are a bit saturated this morning in Central Iowa – 24-hour accumulations show anywhere from 1” to 4” of rain for the central 1/3 of the state. Both the 6-10 day and 8-14 day forecasts from NOAA paint the same picture: wetter and warmer than average. The warmer temps will be welcome as corn needs to play a bit of catch up on GDDs. At the break, corn futures were 1 to 3 lower, taking a breather after a positive close yesterday. Yesterday’s momentum carried soybeans through the overnight trade with all forward months 2 cents higher this morning. Look for the market to be choppy today as traders position themselves for the 3 day weekend break.
Have a good day!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

FC Morning Market Commentary for 8/28/2014


AM Comments 8/28/2014

Thursday, August 28, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Joel Pudenz

Export sales released this morning at 7:30 failed to cause any fireworks before the 7:45 break. Old crop corn and soybeans sales were both net negative (due to cancelations) and within market expectations. What’s got the market a bit excited is new crop export sales: new crop corn sales were on the upper range of estimates and beans were higher than the trade expected. The variable to watch today is what is happening in Eastern Europe. Wheat futures are higher on reports of increased tension and Russian troops entering Eastern Ukraine. Unless we know Black Sea exports are being affected, this will be a short term supportive input.
Weather looks to be wet for the next few weeks. Plenty of precipitation is in the forecast for the Western Corn Belt with some colder weather to follow. However, there is no threat of frost forecasted at through at least mid-September. NOAA projects a warmer-than-average winter (Nov-Dec-Jan) is on the way, which would be nice after what we had last winter.
Markets opening:
Corn 1 to 2 cents higher
Beans 1 to 3 higher
Have a good day!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/27/2014


AM Comments 08/27/14

Wednesday, August 27, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

The soybean market is bouncing higher today after making new contract lows yesterday.  This rally this morning could end up being nothing more than profit taking, but it is still nice to see.  U.S. soybean yields in the Delta look fantastic and good weather has allowed them to get it out of the field without issues.  This of course has pressured soybean basis in the South, which will slowly work its way North here soon as the inverse collapses. 
Overall for today we expect a choppy two-sided trade on very little news.  One thing to think about:  in the eyes of the trade potential crop sizes if anything are still growing, not shrinking which should keep somewhat of a lid on the market. 
Opening Calls
Corn 2 to 3 cents lower
Soybeans 2 to 4 cents higher
Have a great day!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/26/2014


AM Comments 8/26/2014

Tuesday, August 26, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Joel Pudenz

The market is fairly quiet this morning, showing weaker futures for corn and soybeans. New crop soybeans are lower at the break (and made new contract lows overnight), reflecting friendly weather and steady/strong soybean crop ratings. Pod setting is 90% vs. 89% on average. As we near the start of September, we know a later-than-average fall will be needed – nothing is showing us that we will receive anything different. Corn ratings improved from last week by 1% nationally, pressuring new crop prices. We anticipate the market to trade steady to lower throughout the day – which won’t make much of a Turnaround Tuesday.
Have a good day!

Monday, August 25, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/25/2014


AM Comments 08/25/14

Monday, August 25, 2014, 7:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

So far this morning the futures markets for corn and soybeans are weaker on nothing more than good weather and generally rising production projections.  Weather… there were some nice rains over the weekend which included NE IA and NW IL (they have been extremely dry) which can only help production in those areas. When looking at extended weather forecasts today there are not any signs of a cold snap in either the 6-10 or 8-14 day maps… yes, it is getting to be that time of year to keep an eye out for early frost/freeze potential.  Production… the Delta is getting started with corn harvest and early yield indications out of there look slightly better than expected. 
Opening Calls
Corn 2 to 4 cents lower
Soybeans 5 to 8 cents lower
Have a great day!

Friday, August 22, 2014

DuraCade/Viptera Acceptance Policy **REVISION**

Recently there have been changes within the marketplace in terms of who will accept the DuraCade and Viptera corn traits.  Several local end users that initially announced they would accept these products have now changed policy and will not accept them. 
Therefore, the only FC location that will be able to accept these varieties will be BUCKEYE.  Additionally, there may by specific unload days or hours involved with these receipts.  Growers will need to advise us prior to delivery for further logistics coordination.
Please consult your Syngenta representative for help determining a delivery point

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/22/2014


AM Comments 08/22/14

Friday, August 22, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

The markets are quiet but a little firmer this morning.  Soybeans are being lead around a bit by the cash market, which in places is extremely firm.  That general tightness is pushing the front end of the market higher, dragging November bean futures along with it a bit.  Also, another flash sale of new crop soybeans to China was announced at 8am this morning, which could give us enough strength to remain positive most of the day.  The Pro Farmer Crop Tour has the IA yield just under 179bpa which is less than what the USDA was showing earlier this month… This maybe can be the reason why corn is a penny higher this morning but overall there really isn’t much to go on for price direction.
Opening Calls
Corn steady to 1c higher
Soybeans 3 to 5 cents higher

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/19/2014


AM Comments 8/19/2014

Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Joel Pudenz

Corn and soybean futures are both lower at the 7:45 break, corn 3 cents lower and beans a nickel lower. The first of the Pro Farmer tour yield estimates are in: Ohio is 182.1 bpa vs. 177 from USDA and South Dakota is 152.7 bpa vs. 139 from USDA. The market might pay a little bit of attention to this, but is more focused on the crop ratings from yesterday’s report and upcoming weather forecasts. Corn ratings released yesterday showed a slight drop in G/E ratings, 72% this week vs. 73% last week. Iowa improved on the week in G/E ratings, increasing to 76% this week vs. 75% last week. Soybeans improved 1% from last week, coming in at 71% G/E nationally. Weather forecasts are continuing to remain favorable with some heat pegged for this weekend and then a return to cooler temperatures with above average precipitation.
Opening calls:
Corn 2 to 3 lower
Soybeans 5 to 7 lower
Have a great day!

Monday, August 18, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8-18-2014


AM Comments 08/18/14

Monday, August 18, 2014, 7:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

The markets traded both higher and lower last night with corn higher at the moment (while beans are currently a shade lower).  If corn closes higher today that would be the 6th consecutive day!  Much of this support is stemming from last Tuesday’s S&D report which not only came in a little disappointing on projected 14/15 yield but also showed increased old crop demand.  Overall when looking at corn… there really isn’t a lot of bullish news out there it just feels like maybe the market was tired of going lower and decided to take a break (somehow using a lower than expected (but still record) corn yield from the USDA as an excuse).
Crop ratings will be out this afternoon after the close (3pm release of data, as usual).  The market is expecting the soybean crop to hold steady (was 70% good-to-excellent last week) while the corn crop is expected to drop a bit (it was 73% G/E last week).  The Pro Farmer Crop Tour starts today which will give the trade some additional opinions on crop conditions as the week progresses.
Opening Calls
Corn 1 to 3 cents higher
Soybeans steady/mixed
Have a great day!

Friday, August 15, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/15/2014


AM Comments 08/15/14

Friday, August 15, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

The corn and soybeans markets are bouncing a bit higher today on not a lot of news other than some new FSA acreage data was released.  The FSA is showing 1.54 million of acres of corn and 827k acres of beans that were put into ‘prevent plant’ this spring (far below last year of course).  In general the actual planted acreage numbers from the FSA are a bit hard to read, due to the fact that not 100% of the acres are reported to their office.  However, if you start to extrapolate their acreage data you can make the case that the actual planted acres of soybeans this year are lower than what the USDA gave us in June which means we may see a revision in the January report this winter…  Not a major market mover but it does give the bulls something to chew on today.
Opening Calls
Corn 3 to 5 cents higher
Soybeans 6 to 9 cents higher
Have a great day!


FC Safety Tip of the Week; Equipment Mounting & Dismounting


Equipment Mounting & Dismounting


Safe access when mounting or dismounting various pieces of equipment is an essential part of workplace safety.


Three Points of Contact

     Use either two hands and one foot, or one hand and two feet when mounting and dismounting equipment. Failure to use this method has resulted in numerous serious injuries.

     Keep hands free when making three points of contact.

     Maintain traction by ensuring footwear is free of potential hazards such as dirt, oil, and grease.

     Use hoisting materials to transport tools and other objects that may keep hands from being free.


Inspection and Maintenance

     Inspect contact areas for slip or trip hazards.

     Ensure steps and handrails are properly secured and free of defects and debris.

     Ensure landing areas are equipped with adequate lighting.


Proper Approach

     Always face equipment when mounting or dismounting.

     Always use the access provided by the manufacturer.




Thursday, August 14, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/14/2014


AM Comments 8/14/2014

Thursday, August 14, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Joel Pudenz

After a modest close lower yesterday, corn and soybean futures are mixed this morning with corn down ¼ cent and beans even to 5 cents higher. The market has pretty much digested the USDA report from Tuesday and the pre-report pressure has returned to the front of traders’ minds. Overnight, December corn traded near contract lows; November soybeans made new contract lows. Yield estimates, favorable weather, and growing crop sizes will continue pressuring prices to angle lower. Export sales this morning were neutral to futures, coming within trade estimates for both corn and soybeans. As we continue to receive timely rains through the balance of August (like the event forecasted this weekend), the bulls will continue having a tough time making their case.
Opening calls:
Corn steady to slightly lower
Beans steady to 5 cents higher
Have a great day!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/13/2014


AM Comments

Wednesday, August 13, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Joel Pudenz

Corn and soybeans are both showing green this morning after a relatively quiet overnight trade. Opening calls have corn steady to a penny higher and soybeans 2 to 5 higher. Yesterday’s report was supportive to corn (due to lower-than-expected yields and production) and we see some of that carrying over into today. A weaker dollar adds a touch of support as well this morning as corn feels to be range bound – at least in the short term. Weather (which is becoming less and less of an input) looks good/cool through this weekend with chances of rain hitting most of the Midwest. Key dry areas like Northeast Iowa, Southern Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Northwest Illinois are forecasted to get some nice rains as well. Warmer temps should follow in the coming weeks to finish off the month of August.
Have a great day!


Tuesday, August 12, 2014

FC August USDA Report Summary for 8/12/2014


August USDA Report

Tuesday, August 12, 2014, 11:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

The USDA report was out and for those who were expecting, or maybe hoping, for some fireworks – it is a bit disappointing (read: quiet).  Corn yields came in below the average trade guess..  At first glance you could say that with the USDA coming in with a smaller crop – corn prices should be higher, maybe even sharply higher.  It is important to note that this crop is still projected to have a record US yield on it, pushing it over 14 billion bushels…. that is a lot of corn.  If you take that and add in the thought that in years like this “big crops get bigger” you could have a hard time going long corn in here which helps explain why prices are struggling to move higher despite the lower yield projected from the USDA.
Soybeans.  This one looks a little bearish.  The USDA bumped the yield up a touch and carried those bushels right into a now larger-than-expected carryout for next summer – 430 million bushels.  For reference the carryout this summer is just 140 million bushels so that is a big change on the overall availability of soybeans in the market.  Generally speaking beans still look overpriced when compared to corn.  It feels like the market is still holding onto a weather premium in beans (how will August finish up?).  If we can get another few weeks down the road without cutting into potential soybean production you can make a case for beans to go test some new lows.
Some facts/stats from today’s report on the 14/15 crop:
·         USDA corn yield 167.4 bpa, the trade expected 170.1bpa
·         USDA corn carryout 1.808 billion bushels, the trade expected 2.005bb
·         USDA soybean yield at 45.4bpa, the trade expected 45.2bpa
·         USDA soybean carryout 460 million bushels, the trade expected 414mb


FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/12/2014


AM Comments 08/12/14

Tuesday, August 12, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

Happy Report Day!  Our markets look like they will stay on the weaker side heading into today’s 11am USDA reports (crop production & S&D).  When the clock hits 11:00:01… all bets are off.
First, the numbers.  In regards to corn production the trade is looking for U.S. corn yield to come out around 170.2 bpa with a production of 14.250 billion bushels.   For the last three years the USDA numbers have come in below the average trade guess, if that happens again today maybe we see a little bounce higher?  That’s a big maybe.  On soybeans the market is expecting bean yields to be raised ever-so-slightly to 45.5bpa with a production of 3.815 billion bushels.  The track record of the “trade guesses” on this report is similar to corn – only more exaggerated:  In 12 out of the last 13 years on the August production report the USDA has come out with a smaller yield than what the trade was expecting.  With August soybean weather being up in the air, this deviation is easier to explain. 
At first glance when thinking about this report… A) will the trade be happy with today’s yield increases in corn and B) will the USDA be willing to raise bean production (that is already projected to be a record) with the dry weather we experienced late July / early August?
Opening Calls
Corn down 1 to 3 cents
Soybeans down 3 to 6 cents


Monday, August 11, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/11/2014


AM Comments 08/11/14

Monday, August 11, 2014, 7:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

The markets look to start the week off awfully quiet as both corn and soybeans are trading steady/mixed so far this morning.  Initially supportive to prices are dry weather concerns in China – which helped beans, meal and corn work higher last night.  On the flip side, reduced tensions in the Black Sea has allowed wheat prices to slip lower which could eventually drag on corn. 
Tomorrow the August Crop Production and S&D reports will be released from the USDA.  The general idea that the US corn and soybean crops are large should keep the market from mounting any substantial rallies ahead of the report.  However, with the market on/near its lows (esp in corn) and the potential for a surprise always looming I wouldn’t be surprised to see a little profit-taking or short-covering ahead of the report.  This could give us a small bounce between now and the 11am release time tomorrow.
Opening Calls
Corn steady to 2c higher
Soybeans steady to 2c lower
Have a great day!

Friday, August 8, 2014

FC Safety Tip of the week: Hydraulic Equipment Safety

Hydraulic Equipment Safety

Farm equipment operators must be extremely careful when working around hydraulic equipment. Hydraulic pressure is often strong enough to knock a person out if a leak or explosion occurs.

Follow these guidelines when working with hydraulic equipment:

  • Inspect hydraulic equipment regularly for leaks. Report and fix any leaks immediately.
  • Ensure that all couplings are properly installed and in good working condition.
  • Ensure that all lines and fittings are in good condition. Repair or replace any equipment that is not in good condition.
  • Lock transport wheels and support jacks on implements in place before disconnecting hydraulic cylinders. This action will prevent sudden shocks to the machine or personal injury.
  • Keep couplings and hoses in good repair so that the hydraulic system can safely sustain maximum pressure.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/6/2014


AM Comments 8/6/2014

Wednesday, August 6, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Joel Pudenz

Nice rain is falling throughout Western Iowa and will move east as the day progress, bringing moisture to regions that haven’t seen much for a few weeks. Corn and soybean futures traded mixed overnight with corn finding some early spillover support from wheat; there are some renewed rumors of a Russian invasion into Ukraine. Next Tuesday, the USDA will release updated crop production numbers. Average trade guesses are 170.2 bpa corn yield (14.250 bln bushels produced) and 45.2 bpa soybean yield (3.815 bln bushels produced). The corn estimate is a lot higher from last month while soybeans are just a touch higher.
Have a good day!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/5/2014


AM Comments 08/05/14

Tuesday, August 5, 2014, 8:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

The markets are under pressure this morning after rains slipped further east than expected (into northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin) and crop ratings (in soybeans in particular) were better than expected last night.  What also has the market leaning bearish are the production estimates being released from different private companies.  Yesterday we had FCStone come out with a 172.4 bpa yield for the US, which pencils out to a 14.455 billion bushel crop (fyi that is big).  Informa will be out today with their numbers – if they also show a big crop, corn and beans could slip lower once again.
Opening Calls
Corn 3 to 4 cents lower
Soybeans 15 to 20 cents lower
Have a great day!

Monday, August 4, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 8/4/2014


AM Comments 08/04/14

Monday, August 4, 2014, 7:08 AM
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

The weather models are bouncing around a bit this morning, but most of them are still calling for slight chances for rain early this week and better chances later this week.  There are spots in the belt that look like they may not get as much as we thought Friday which had the grain markets moving higher last night.  The extended forecast remain cool, the precip potential is projected to be normal in the western corn belt while the eastern corn belt is projected to receive above normal precip. 
This afternoon’s crop ratings are projected to drop a bit for both corn and beans – the story being that the dry weather has knocked a few points off the good-to-excellent ratings.  This could also be why the market has found some buyers overnight. 
Many in the trade are calling the action we saw overnight nothing more than a short-covering rally.  If we are in a ‘rallies are meant to be sold’ type of market then this little upward swing in prices should be rewarded with a few sales from the producer, especially the producer who has a record or near-record crop brewing out in the field…
Opening Calls
Corn 2 to 3 cents higher
Soybeans 11 to 14 cents higher