Sunflower Highlights
Post Date: Apr 10 2023
Minnesota Sunflower Council elects board members
Tom Dowdle has been re-elected to the Minnesota Sunflower Council. Dowdle farms near Kennedy, Minnesota. He grows oil sunflower as well as sugarbeets, spring wheat, malting barley, and soybeans. Dowdle will represent Region 1 on the Minnesota Sunflower Council. Tom Smude has also been elected to the Minnesota Sunflower Council. Smude farms near Pierz, Minnesota. He grows oil sunflower as well as corn and soybeans. In addition, he is a cattle producer raising finished steers and cow/calf pairs. Smude will represent Region 2 on the Minnesota Sunflower Council.
Sunflower Production Conference Video Link Available
If you missed the ‘2023 Getting-it-Right in Sunflower Production,’ video conference you can access it on-line. Topics covered ranged from hybrid selection, what has been learned from the fall sunflower surveys, plant nutrient and soil management, updates for weed, disease and insect management, combine fire prevention and sunflower marketing. The program was conducted by North Dakota State University Extension. Recording and resources are available at, scroll to the conference video section and click the sunflower meeting link. Each individual talk has its own video clip. Additional publications and resources are available under the sunflower conference resources.
Oil Premium Paid at Crush Plants
Something else to consider when making final planting decisions is the oil premiums that crush plants pay on sunflower. Sunflower is the only oilseed that pays premiums for oil content above 40%. Considering oil premiums that are offered at the crush plants on oil content above 40% at a rate of 2% price premium for each 1% of oil above 40%; this pushes a contract with 45% oil content gross return 10% higher per cwt. The AOG $23.45 contract increases to $25.80, and the cash $25.15 contract moves up to $27.65. See for yourself how the oil premium can add to the bottom line by going to: Oil Premium Calculator (
Traders are still chattering about USDA’s March 31 report which had producers planting much lower acres than expected by the trade. USDA pegged a 20% decrease in planted acres from 2022 while traders wanted to see an increase or at least steady acres from last year. With crop insurance prices of $30.50 for oils and $32.60 for confections plus new crop prices above historical levels it seems like a no-brainer to plant sunflowers this year. Market analysts expect the acreage discussion to continue into the foreseeable future as the battle for acres continues. The March report gave farmers a look at what others are thinking of planting this year. There is still time to adjust plans to take advantage of the market opportunities that sunflowers can offer. Something to consider is how well sunflowers performed last year. Confections had a record high yield while oil-types had the second highest yield on record for the U.S. Crush plants and confection processors are still offering Act of God (AOG) contracts for fall delivery.  These ‘fail safe’ contracts have become very popular with farmers throughout the production region.  It provides an opportunity to ‘lock in’ attractive prices now for fall delivery and removes that all important factor of ‘yield risk’ when uncertain growing conditions exist. Late season planted crops like sunflower can perform well and markets will reward that production. With lower than anticipated acres, diversifying market risk with some sunflower acres would be a good option in 2023.
Work safely around grain
eople 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 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 let children 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 lifeline 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’s available here:  
Upcoming Events
June 27-29, 2023 - NSA Summer Seminar; Spearfish, SD
Markets at a Glance
Weekly Prices Recorded on Monday, April 10, 2023 ($/CWT)
  Deliver Last Year Last Week This Week Change 2023 NEW Crop
Chicago Oil Nearby 74.30 56.68 54.48 -2.20 53.65
West Fargo, ND NuSun 38.00 21.50 21.50 NC 23.30
West Fargo, ND High Oleic 38.50 22.00 22.00 NC 24.80
Enderlin, ND NuSun 38.00 21.50 21.50 NC 23.95
Enderlin, ND High Oleic 38.50 22.00 22.00 NC 25.15
Lamar, CO High Oleic 38.50 23.25 23.25 NC 25.25
U.S. CRUDE OIL VALUES recorded on Monday, April 10, 2023
(dollars per 100 lb. internal U.S. locations)
  Last Year Last Week This Week Change
Soybean Oil 84.30 61.68 59.48 -2.20
Cotton Oil (pbsy) 104.30 101.68 99.48 -2.20
Corn Oil 152.00 84.00 84.00 NC

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.
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