Planting report doesn’t have a clue


Regardless if March arrives with a lion’s roar or a lamb’s bleat, grain and livestock markets will spend each of its days sweating over the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s March 30 Prospective Plantings Report.
The report will estimate 2007 U.S. acreage for everything from alfalfa to wrinkled seed peas.
The spotlight, though, for growers and users alike will be on projected corn, soybeans, cotton and wheat planting and what the acre-swapping farmers will do between the crops to maximize income.
Not perfect. While USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service conducts a very scientific survey (“


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Alan Guebert was raised on an 800-acre, 100-cow southern Illinois dairy farm. After graduation from the University of Illinois in 1980, he served as a writer and editor at Professional Farmers of America, Successful Farming magazine and Farm Journal magazine. His syndicated agricultural column, The Farm and Food File, began in June, 1993, and now appears weekly in more than 70 publications throughout the U.S. and Canada. He and spouse Catherine, a social worker, have two adult children.