A sharp reduction in forecast yield and lower harvested acreage resulted in a reduced forecast for 2012/13 U.S. sorghum production this month. At 248 million bushels, forecast production is down 92 million from last month, but is 33 million bushels above last year’s crop estimate. Based on August 1 conditions, yield is lowered by 16.3 bushels per acre this month and is projected 6.0 bushels per acre below the last season’s historically low yield. Hot dry weather in Texas, Kansas, and Oklahoma has reduced prospects for the 2012 sorghum crop. As of August 5, 25 percent of the U.S. sorghum crop was rated good to excellent, compared with 27 percent last season and 66 percent in 2009/10.
Total use of sorghum in 2012/13 is projected down 80 million bushels this month to 250 million reflecting tight supplies. Feed and residual is cut 30 million bushels to 70 million as high prices reduce feed demand by livestock producers. Sorghum FSI use is lowered 10 million bushels to 80 million, with lower expected use for fuel ethanol. Export prospects are reduced 40 million bushels to 100 million as demand from Mexico is expected to remain strong, but high prices and tight supplies limit shipments. U.S. ending stocks are projected at 25 million bushels, 12 million bushels lower than last month’s projection and slightly less than forecast for the previous season.
Total use for sorghum in 2011/12 is forecast at 215 million bushels, unchanged from last month. Feed and residual use remains forecast at 75 million bushels. Sorghum used for ethanol is expected lower during the summer quarter, with tightening supplies cutting marketing year FSI use 5 million bushels to 85 million. Exports are raised 5 million bushels to 55 million, reflecting stronger-than-expected recent shipments. Ending stocks for 2010/11 are virtually unchanged this month at 27 million bushels.
Sorghum prices received by farmers for 2012/13 are projected higher with surging corn prices. The projected farm price range, is raised $2.00 on the low end of the range and $2.40 on the high end or the range resulting in a spread of $7.00 to $8.40. The 2011/12 average sorghum farm price is narrowed $0.05 on each end of the range to $6.05-$6.15 per bushel.