USDA released its first estimate of 2020 planted acres. Sunflower growers intend to plant 1.56 million acres in 2020, up 15 percent from 2019. Compared with last year, growers in seven of the eight major sunflower producing states expect an increase in sunflower acreage this year. If realized, this will be the highest planted area for the US since 2016. The state expecting the largest increase from last year is South Dakota, where planted area is expected to increase 87,000 acres compared with last year. Area intended for oil type varieties, at 1.36 million acres, is up 13 percent from 2019. The increase in oil type acres was slightly lower than industry expectations. Area intended for non-oil varieties, estimated at 202,000 acres, is up 32 percent from last year and is in line with most traders’ thoughts. Corn planted area for all purposes in 2020 is estimated at 97 million acres, up 8 percent or 7.3 million acres from last year. The trade’s expectation was 94.32 million. Soybean planted area for 2020 is estimated at 83.5 million acres, up 10 percent from last year. USDA pegged 2020 spring wheat acres at 12.6 million compared with the trade’s expectation of 13 million. The March acreage and grain stocks reports will guide the market as we head into the planting season. It will also give farmers a look at what others are thinking of planting this year and may adjust their plans.