Farmers Business Network (FBN), San Carlos, California, on March 30 released its 2022 Planting Report. The FBN Planting Report provides one of the first major survey-based estimates of U.S. farmers’ planting intentions for the year and those market implications, based on more than 2,000 responses responsible for 4.2 million acres across 40 states.

"Ahead of the USDA report, we believe this unique data provided by FBN farmers paints a clear picture of acreage decisions and sets our farmers up for success in the markets," said Kevin McNew, FBN chief economist. "With a range of global factors - from the war in Eastern Europe to inflation to volatile input prices, we know these are highly uncertain times, but our acreage survey shows there may be more upside in markets into the growing season."

The report sees upside for corner markets as farmers signal significant decline in corn acres for 2022. It projects that U.S. corn acreage will be at 91.1 million acres, a 2.3 million acre decline from last year. North Dakota is expected to see the biggest dip in corn acres among states. If FBN's projection is accurate, this lower amount of corn production could further push corn prices higher, continuing their bullish trajectory.

FBN's report is neutral on soybeans, with acreage pegged at 89 million acres for 2022, up 1.8 million from the year before. Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, and North Dakota all are expected to see expanded soybean acres, while Minnesota should see a decline. Industry expectations are for 88.9 million of soybean acres to be planted, closely aligned with FBN projections.

"Brazil crop losses will give US soy a competitive advantage for trade heading into the 2022 crop year, while new and expanded US soy crush facilities will help feed the renewable diesel demand curve and keep soy crush disappearance reaching new highs," the report notes.

The report has a bullish outlook on spring wheat. Although spring wheat prices are high, fertilizer cost inflation and competing strong prices for barley, pulses, and soybeans likely will push farmers in the Northern Plains to cut back on spring wheat acres – with FBN expecting a drop off of 200,000 acres, to 11.2 million projected in 2022. Given that industry analysts are projecting higher acreage (11.8 million), if FBN's report proves correct, that could help push wheat prices above recent highs.

The report is based on surveys accounting for over 4.2 million acres from growers in 40 states and representing 10 principal crops.

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