Sunflower Highlights
Post Date: Aug 28 2017
Crop Progress
81-percent of the Kansas sunflower crop is reported blooming, that's right on track with the five year average for that state. Meanwhile, 71-percent of the sunflower crop there is reported in good to excellent condition and in Minnesoat, 90-percent is in good to excellent condition.
Crop Progress - Monday, August 28, 2017
State This Week Last Week Last Year 5 Year Average
North Dakota        
Blooming 100 95 NA NA
Petals Dry 42 10 63 35
Bracts Yellow 14 ---- 30 NA
Mature 1 ---- 3 NA
South Dakota        
Blooming 90 80 79 91
Petals Dry 21 6 13 24
Bracts Yellow 1 ---- NA NA
Blooming 81 70 88 85
Petals Dry 6 ---- 14 21
Harvested NA 33 NA NA
Crop Conditions - Monday, August 28, 2017
State Very Poor Poor Fair Good Excellent
North Dakota 7 18 42 33 0
South Dakota 7 20 49 22 2
Minnesota 0 0 10 69 21
Colorado 1 2 16 73 8
Kansas 0 3 26 60 11
USDA Provides Help with Blackbirds
As sunflowers ripen, blackbirds are beginning to appear and cause problems. The USDA can help; click here for a map with phone numbers for USDA Wildlife Services personnel that can help North Dakota producers that have blackbird problems. Some other ways to reduce damage include cattail management, cannons, harassment, desiccants, and repellants. They are even more effective when used together. 
Sunflower prices ended the week mixed at down 10 to up $1.70 per cwt. and continue to trade above the 45-day moving average at the crush plants. The rally in birdfood prices led to a lot of crop being traded in the past month. Birdfood prices were as high as $22 per cwt but have since backed off into a range of $17.50-$18.50 on the increased sales. Sunflower crop ratings in the Dakotas are trending upward after receiving beneficial rain this month. On July 31, 40-45 percent of the sunflower crop was rated in very poor to poor condition by USDA. In the latest USDA report the very poor to poor rating has decreased to only 25-27 percent. Sunflower is very drought tolerant and the rain may have added on some pounds and in some cases saved the crop from being worked down. In 2015 and 2016, the Dakotas experienced record sunflower yields, averaging over 1,800 pounds. It is doubtful we’ll see those yields topped given the severe to exceptional drought conditions this year. However, it does show the resiliency of sunflower to produce a marketable crop in a drought year. The preliminary finding that imports of biodiesel from Indonesia and Argentina were subsidized is helping CBoT soyoil futures. Some estimate that soyoil futures could test 37-39 cents. If realized this would be positive news for sunflower prices.
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