National Sunflower Association
http://sunflowernsa.com/smartmail/sunflower-Highlights-April-20-2020/
National Sunflower Association

Sunflower Highlights

Minnesota Sunflower Council elects board members
Tom Dowdle and Steven Schmidt have been re-elected to the Minnesota Sunflower Council. Dowdle farms near Kennedy, Minnesota. He grows oil sunflower as well as sugar beets, spring wheat, malting barley, corn and soybeans. Dowdle will represent Region 1. Schmidt grows sunflower, corn and soybeans on his farm near Dumont, Minnesota. Schmidt will represent Region 2 on the Minnesota Sunflower Council.

Sunflower planting pointers
With sunflower planting just around the corner, paying attention to planter calibration and planter speed can make a big difference in achieving a successful, uniform sunflower stand. Click here to see the top ten sunflower planting pointers.

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 about to get the cop all harvested before the birds even more in. The earliest plant date for Minnesota is April 21. In North Dakota, it is May 6 for most counties north of Highway 200 and May 11 for the remaining counties, based on the USDA RMA early 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.

Sign up for E-Publications
Would you like to get a link to a digital copy of Sunflower Highlights each week in your email? It’s easy! Click here to sign up. And for sunflower prices at various locations, click here

Markets
Sunflower prices were pressured last week by producers selling and delivering seed before spring planting begins. Nearby prices were down 20 to 25 cents. Despite the recent downturn, current old crop prices are still $2.25-$2.45 higher versus last year at this same time at the North Dakota crush plants. High Plains old crop prices are $1.55-$1.80 higher than last year. New crop prices were down 10 to 30 cents. The spillover weakness from a broad range of commodities is expected to continue affecting commodity trading as the coronavirus outbreak continues to roil all markets. Very little has changed in terms of a positive tone for most commodities lately. On average, 40% of the US corn crop is used for ethanol production. A slowdown in ethanol production continues to set record lows and is impacting corn prices. Ethanol stocks also reached record levels last week, with inventories swelling nearly 75 million gallons to 1.2 billion gallons on reduced fuel demand. Weakened processing demand in the Eastern Corn Belt has led soybean bids lower. A reduction in egg sets lowered poultry feed requirements coupled with most meat processors cutting production or shuttering plants have led to lower prices at crushing facilities. The coronavirus has clearly created a heavy cloud over the market. Many market watchers expect this to continue affecting commodity trading until the spread of the coronavirus slows, more testing is available, and incidents are somewhat under control.

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