Sunflower Highlights
Post Date: Apr 29 2019
Reducing Blackbird Damage
A good strategy to reducing blackbird damage is to plant as early as possible and desiccate the crop. In many cases, producers have been able to get the crop all harvested before the birds even move in. The earliest plant date for Minnesota was April 21. In North Dakota, it is May 6 for most counties north of Hwy 200 and May 11 for the remaining counties, based on USDA RMA earliest planting dates. Why take a chance when it comes to blackbirds when you can have a good sunflower crop? Maximize your return by planting early and getting the crop harvested as soon as possible.
Register Now for 2019 NSA Summer Seminar
Registration is now open for our 2019 NSA Summer Seminar, scheduled for June 26-27, 2019. This year’s Summer Seminar will be held in Medora, North Dakota. Click here to register on our website. You’ll find our tentative schedule too, as well as hotel information and more. Pre-registration will begin at $325 and golf at $145, so register early for the best price. A block of rooms has been reserved in Medora. To make your reservation, visit, select hotel reservations and enter check-in and check-out dates. You also need to enter Group Code 5781. Note: The total per/room you’ll see when making your reservation is for your entire stay; it is not a nightly rate. You can also call 1-800-633-6721 and ask for the NSA block of rooms. The program is being finalized now and more information will be coming soon. Contact Tina Mittelsteadt at with questions.
Reserve Your Tickets for the Medora Musical
While you’re in Medora for the NSA Summer Seminar, bring the family and take in everything there is to do in the historic town. Click here for an exclusive booking link to reserve your seats for the Medora  Musical. You can also call 1-800-633-6721 (1-800-MEDORA-1). Ask for reservations and let them know you’re with the National Sunflower Association and want tickets for the June 26 performance. Please book by June 5 to ensure you have access to the group block.  After this date, all unused seats will be released to the general public. 
Work Safely Around Grain
People who work with grain—loading it, unloading it, and moving it from bin to bin—need to know about the hazards of flowing grain and how to prevent a grain entrapment situation. People can become caught or trapped in grain in three different ways: the collapse of bridged grain, the collapse of a vertical wall of grain, and entrapment in flowing grain. Moving or flowing grain is involved in all three. Here are some general safety precautions:
  • Don’t letchildren work or play in an area where there is flowing grain.
  • All workers involved in a situation where there is flowing grain should be warned to stay out of the grain.
  • Warning decals should be placed at all bin entrances, on all rail cars, truck and trailer boxes used for grain hauling, and on all gravity discharge wagons.
  • Never enter a grain bin without stopping the auger first and using “lock-out/tag-out” procedures to secure it.
  • Never enter a grain bin alone; have at least two people at the bin to assist in case problems arise. Use a safety harness or safety line when entering the bin.
  • Install a permanent life-line hanging from the center of the bin for a person to grab on to.
  • Control the access to grain storage facilities to prevent grain entrapments.
For more information, check out the NDSU publication, “Caught in the Grain.” It is available online here
Upcoming Events
June 25-27, 2019: NSA Summer Seminar, Medora, ND
Sunflower prices were pressured by spillover weakness from the soy complex this week. Nearby NuSun and high oleic prices were down 10 cents. New crop prices were down 10 cents to unchanged. Soybean pricescontinue to see stress from relatively low Chinese imports and traders are growing anxious amid slow-going U.S.-China trade negotiations. Very little has changed in terms of a positive tone for the soy complex lately. Adding further stress was this week's news that the U.S. is threatening to impose sanctions on China in May, if China buys oil from Iran. This news may make it more difficult for the U.S. and China to reach a trade agreement anytime soon. Traders are also concerned of the risk that USDA's estimate of ending soybean supplies will have to be increased from 895 million bushels to possibly near 1 billion bushels, if a trade agreement with China fails to materialize. With no certainty about a trade deal with China and potential record ending U.S. soybean supplies looming, soybean prices will remain under bearish pressure. Sunflower prices have stayed relatively firm the past few weeks. A smaller than expected 2018 crop and lower beginning stocks have supported prices. There is still time to take advantage of the market opportunities that sunflowers can offer as processors are still offering Act of God (AOG) and cash new crop contracts.
Weekly Prices Recorded on Monday, April 29, 2019 ($/CWT)
  Deliver Last Year Last Week This Week Change 2019 NEW Crop
Chicago Oil Nearby 30.35 28.70 27.88 -.82 28.92
Fargo, ND NuSun 17.85 17.50 17.40 -.10 17.00
Fargo, ND High Oleic 17.75 18.00 17.90 -.10 17.10
Enderlin, ND NuSun 17.80 17.40 17.30 -.10 16.95
Enderlin, ND High Oleic 17.80 17.80 17.70 -.10 17.25
Goodland, KS NuSun 17.10 16.65 16.55 -.10 16.85
Goodland, KS High Oleic 18.10 17.75 17.65 -.10 18.10
Prices recorded here are believed to be reliable at the time of posting. All prices are subject to change. Contact these facilities for complete market details.
U.S. CRUDE OIL VALUES recorded on Monday, April 29, 2109
(dollars per 100 lb. internal U.S. location)
  Last Year Last Week This Week Change
Soybean Oil 28.55 27.95 26.88 -1.07
Cotton Oil (psby) 28.35 37.70 37.19 -.51
Corn Oil 32.00 30.00 30.00 NC
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