By RAY REIMAN
THE WINDUP MONTH for harvest
ing of the nation's major crops begins
with official forecasters predicting total
crop production at only 1 per cent be
hind last year despite a 3 per cent
cutback in harvested acreage. Higher
yields are making up much of the dif
ference, averaging about 1 per cent
above last year's record high.
Among the major groups, feed grain
production is down 1 per cent, while
total output of food grains is down con
siderably, with the 11 per cent smaller
wheat crop more than offsetting the 19
per cent larger rice crop. The soybean
crop is off 3 per cent from 1962 's rec
ord, while flaxseed production is a
whopper compared with last year's
drought-shortened crop. The cotton har
vest is up 2 per cent, peanuts down
2 per cent. Total potato crop is off 10
per cent, hay up 1 per cent.
The 7 million American farm work
ers have again demonstrated their abili
ty to produce more than enough to feed
184 million U.S. consumers and provide
assistance to other friendly nations, de
spite the smallest crop acreage in more
than 60 years.
BEEF CATTLE—The 8 per cent rise
over last fall in the number of cattle
on feed in 26 major feeding states
indicates a lower price trend ahead
than prevailed last winter. Since all
of the increase is among weight groups
now below 900 pounds, you can look for
the greatest increase in marketings to
come after the new year begins.
The late summer-early fall shortage
of quality fed cattle is already fading,
however. As slaughter rises the next
couple months, prices are due to weak
en. By late January or early February,
prices are expected to slip below last
winter (when prices were rising) and
stay under 1962 through the winter and
most of the spring.
As a general guide, look for a slide
of $2 to $3 between now and February,
with prices working off more into the
spring. While summer-fall markets
won't likely zoom as high as they did
this year, they should recover some
what from the levels now expected in
HOGS —Lowest prices of the season
are due to come during the next three
or four weeks. Heavy hogs will weaken
most, as price spreads widen between
hogs above 240 pounds and those below
Part of the 2 per cent smaller late
fall slaughter than last year may be
offset by larger stocks of pork in cold
storage. Although stocks had been
trimmed considerably during Septem
ber, there were still 8 per cent more
pounds in coolers on Oct. 1 than a year
earlier, November hog prices are still
expected to average a little above last
December and January prices should
work up slightly from November levels.
But any attempts at a sharp uptrend
will likely be resisted as packers fore
see a larger winter supply coming from
the 3 per cent larger summer farrow
ings. Prices will probably remain below
1962 throughout the first five or six
months of next year.
LAMBS—In contrast to lower prices
hogs and cattle, the slaughter lamb
Outlook at a Glance
TOTAL 1962 CROP—1 per cent below
FED CATTLE—Lower prices during
HOGS—Prices nearing bottom for the
LAMBS — Market continuing well
WHEAT—Prices generally steady to
FEED GRAINS—Corn prices sliding,
but not below last fall.
POTATOES—Recovery may be a long
DAIRY—Production's back above last
TURKEYS—Not much strength after
Fairly steady market just
market will continue to enjoy somewhat
higher prices than a year earlier for
the next six months. Slaughter will be
down considerably, due to the 4 per
cent smaller lamb crop, the earlier
movement and the tendency to hold
onto a higher share of the breeding
flock to make up for last year's
A relatively stable market is now
in prospect for the rest of the year,
with moderate improvement in sight
during the winter and into the spring.
The spring market for early spring
lambs should be as favorable as it was
this year—perhaps more so.
WHEAT —There's not much in recent
developments to indicate a significant
change in wheat price prospects. The
latest USDA crop report showed only
minor revisions in production estimates
—a slight gain in durum, a slight cut
back in other spring wheat.
Soft red wheat could come in for im
provement in the export situation. With
sales for dollars not living up to ad
vance hopes, USDA has made soft red
wheat available for foreign currency
under the P.L. 480 program. Such ac
tion, however, is not expected to bring
about a tight price-booming balance be
tween supply and demand.
Northern Plains growers whose wheat
has been damaged by frost can still
qualify for price support, although at
discounts ranging from 1 cent to 2 cents
a bushel for each per cent of damage
above 7 per cent,
Late season im
provement in corn and grain sorghum
PRICE RANGES AND TRENDS
Hogs, top of market, cwt.
Hogs, barrows & gilt average, cwt.
Steers, choice, cwt.
Steers, good, cwt.
Heifers, good & choice, cwt.
Cows, utility to commercial, cwt
Cows, canners & cutter, cwt.
Bulls, cutter to commercial, cwt.
Veal, choice St prime, cwt.
Stocker it feeder steers,
good & choice, cwt.
Lambs, choice to prime, cwt.
Wheat, No. 1 dark no, spring, bu. • 2.35
Wheat. No. 2 hard amber durum, bu. 2.56
Corn, No. 2 yellow, bu. .
Oats, No. 2 extra heavy white, bu.
Rye. No. 2, bu. .
Barley, No. 3 or better malting, bu.
Flaxseed. No. 1, bu. .
Hay, alfalfa, ton ..
Alfalfa seed, cwt..
Eggs, Ig. wh. ext., 60-79.9% A, doz.
Potatoes, Minn, farms, cwt .,.
• Protein premiums not included. BH „
Prices for livestock at South St. Paul. Others at Minneapolis, except wool at Boston,
milk, hay and potatoes at Minneapolis farms, eggs at Chicago. Some of the prices are
prospects added 900,000 tons to USDA's
current estimate of total feed grain
production. Tonnage is now placed at
138.9 million tons, about 1 per cent
under the 140.6 million produced in 1961.
The government seems to be of no
mind to help push corn prices below
last fall. Although corn is moving out
of CCC bins at market prices, USDA
officials say they will not sell corn at
prices below those which generally pre
vailed during the past two harvest
Holding new corn in farm storage
should be profitable this season, even
if you didn't participate in the 1962
Feed Grains Program. There won't be
any sharp price run-up following har
vest, but the markets should move
closer to the loan rate by next summer
than they did this year.
POTATOES — Any upward "life" in
the potato market looks to be quite a
long way off—probably too far off to
make storing potatoes very profitable
even though fall prices are generally
low. While the latest crop estimate
showed only a slight production gain
over September's report, it just added
that much on top of an already burden
DAIRY—The record high milk output
for September emphasizes the possibili
ties for a new record production this
fall, following slight cutbacks from last
year during the summer months. With
cow numbers down only slightly and
production per cow up again, a pros
pective 1 per cent rise in October-De
cember output would bring the year's
total output to a record 126.7 billion
record of 125.5 billion produced in 1961.
While above last fall, November will
likely see the year's lowest monthly
output. When production starts to rise
in December and heads toward the an
nual late spring peak, average milk
prices will do just the opposite and
head toward their late spring lows.
EGGS—Prices have probably passed
their highs for the season. But the road
ahead doesn't present any distinct
weakness until after three or four
months. January-March prices are ex
pected to average about like last win
ter, and then generally follow the same
5 cent to 7 cent decline from midwinter
into late spring as last season.
The prospective 4 per cent to 6 per
cent larger 1963 spring chick hatch
points up the probability of lower egg
prices a year from now. Supplies would
be larger, and there's good reason to
expect the downtrend in demand to
TURKEYS—Don't count on much im
compared with the previous
provement in the market after chain
stores wind up their Thanksgiving buy
ing. Supplies will be fairly ample, since
the late season poult hatch was off
from last year by a much smaller mar
gin than during the early months. For
1963, current signs point to a 7 per cent
to 10 per cent larger hatch than in 1962
and about 2 cents lower prices next fall.
Dec. 14 Is Deadline
For Wheat Signup
WINTER WHEAT producers have un
til Dec. 14 to sign up for participation
in the voluntary 1963 winter wheat
program, the U.S. Department of Agri
Under the voluntary reduction pro
vision for 1963, farmers will be able
to divert from 20 to 50 per cent of
their wheat acreage. Special diversion
provisions are made for small farms.
On diverted acres a payment will be
made at 50 per cent of the county
loan rate (reflecting the $1.82 per bushel
national average) on the normal pro
duction of the diverted acres, based
on the 1959-'60 average yields. The
minimum diversion for participation is
20 per cent of the wheat allotment.
In the case of small farms, 20 per
cent of the allotment or the average
1959-'60 wheat acreage, whichever is
Of the $2 per bushel 1963 average
support price to farmers participating
in the 1963 acreage reduction program,
bushel will be available
through loans and purchase agreements
and 18 cents per bushel will be in the
form of a payment in kind based on the
normal production of the harvested
Farmers may receive 50 per cent of
their acreage diversion payment at the
time they sign up. The remainder of
the payment and all of the price sup
port payment will be made after com
pliance is checked next summer.
The signed acreage will be a binding
agreement. This is a change from the
1962 program. Farmers will be re
quired to divert the full acreage for
which they sign up to be eligible for
payments. If a farmer does not divert
the full signed-up acreage he will not
be eligible for price support nor will
he receive acreage diversion or wheat
price support payments.
Payments will be made by sight
drafts which can te used to purchase
Commodity Credit Corporation-owned
wheat. Price support payments will be
made through payment-in-kind certifi
cates. These may be redeemed in
wheat from CCC stocks or cash will be
paid and the CCC will assist in mar
keting the wheat covered by the cer
Acreage diverted to conservation
uses, including summerfallow, will be
in addition to the average acreage of
conserving and 'die land on the farm
for 1959-'60. Diverted acres must be
put in conservation and kept free from
erosion, insects, weeds and rodents.
Production of flaxseed, rapeseed and
mustard will not again be permitted on
diverted acres under the 1963 program.
However, the planting of safflower is
permitted on diverted acres.
Farmers who do not participate in
the voluntary reduction program but
remain within their acreage allotments
will be eligible for price support at the
national average .minimum price of
$1.82 per bushel.
The signup period for spring-planted
wheat will be after the first of the
UNIVERSITY of Minnesota research
men are working with a new legume
crop called berseem clover. They are
trying to find out how it will work as
a substitute for oats in companion crop
seedings with alfalfa. Berseem is a fast
growing legume that looks like alfalfa
and is high in protein. So far it appears
to have good yield potential if harvest
ed about June 20 and a second crop
is also likely. It is still too early to
evaluate but watch for more informa
tion on this one.
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