Market News & Headlines >> Corn Harvest Picks Up, Still Behind

The U.S. corn harvest accelerated last week amid improved weather conditions across the Midwest, but remained well behind normal as some producers continued to concentrate on getting soybeans out of the field.

In Monday afternoon’s weekly crop update, USDA estimated the U.S. corn harvest was 46% complete, up 15 points from a week earlier, but still well behind the five-year average pace of 65%. USDA put soybean harvest at 70% complete, up from 53% a week earlier, but still behind the five-year average of 76%.

Corn harvest is progressing at the slowest pace since 2009, but progress is still more than double what it was that year when only 20% of the crop had been combined by Oct. 25. 

Corn harvest picked up most in the northwest growing states were soybean harvest was already winding down. Soybean harvest was 94% complete as of Sunday in Minnesota, 96% complete in South Dakota and 93% finished in North Dakota, while Iowa harvest progress reached 81% up from 61% a week earlier.

Minnesota producers harvested 25% of their corn crop last week, pushing overall harvest progress to 41%, still 22 percentage points behind the five-year average. Iowa’s corn harvest advanced to 36% complete from 19% a week earlier, but still trailed the average pace by 29 points. Producers in North and South Dakota were able to harvest 15% of their crops last week.