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Updated Agriculture Outlook For 2020 Shows Soybeans More Profitable Than Corn

FILE PHOTO: Annie Ropeik
IPB News

Economists say the coronavirus pandemic has caused some farmers to rethink their planting season. Purdue University agricultural economists updated their 2020 economic outlook Friday during a webinar.

Corn is projected to have record yields this year. But demand for ethanol has dropped, causing an oversupply of corn and prices to plummet.

Purdue ag economist Michael Langemeier says the pandemic shifted his previous outlook to now favor soybeans over corn. 

“And so, rather [than] having similar profitability between the two, we've got a situation, 2020, where soybeans looks considerably profitable,” says Langemeier.

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He expects some farmers to increase their percentage of soybean acres planted in response.

“I know a lot of people can't shift acres,” says Langemeier. “But I do think there's some people that have been watching this, this soybean the corn relationship since mid-March, and maybe change their plans.”

Other industry updates in the webinar included livestock and cash rents.

Congress recently passed a stimulus package that would include some financial relief to the ag industry.

Contact Samantha at shorton@wfyi.org or follow her on Twitter at @SamHorton5.

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