Today, we got the USDA’s first projections for the 2018/19 crop. In addition to giving grain markets an idea of what production numbers are going to be around the world, they also gave us a look at the demand side.
For peas, the USDA doesn’t actually provide a projection until later in the growing season but, given the focus being around production, we took our own stab at the production.
This year, the USDA is estimating that American farmers will plant 908,000 acres of peas. Historically speaking, 94.6% of the planted acres of peas gets harvested, which means that this year, it can be postulated that American farmers will combine 858,968 acres of peas.
Using the average yield of the last 5 years of 36 bushels per acre, it can be forecasted that the American farmer will produce 840,688 tonnes of peas. Compared to last year’s production 771,922 tonnes, this would mean that this year’s American peas harvest will be 19.5% higher.
We are assuming that we will have better (read: not as dry) weather this year, and thus, production in 2018/19 is expected to be up due to yield increase.
We have to point that this production forecast is just a shot in the dark. If accurate, it means that North American peas supplies could get hefty. But everything depends on the weather from now during the planting season this spring until harvest in the fall. Therefore, the weather is a wildcard to watch going forward. It remains to be seen.