Sunflower prices continue to move higher as the battle for 2021 acres continues. At the crush plants, old crop NuSun added 5 to 20 cents while high oleic prices was unchanged to up $2.10 in the past week. New crop NuSun prices increased 20 to 70 cents with high oleic up 20 cents to $2.10 for the week. Drought is spreading and intensifying in the Dakotas. There is still time to adjust your plans to take advantage of the market opportunities that drought tolerant sunflowers can offer. Late season planted crops like sunflower can perform well and markets are setting up to reward that production with prices not seen since 2012. The USDA planting intentions report had producers in seven of the eight major sunflower production states expecting a decrease in sunflower acreage this year. Seed supplies are still plentiful to add acres this season. If you are concerned about the drought impacting yields, crush and confection plants are still offering Act of God (AOG) contracts for fall delivery. These ‘fail safe’ contracts have become very popular with farmers throughout the production region. It provides an opportunity to ‘lock in’ attractive prices now for fall delivery and removes that all important factor of ‘yield risk’ when uncertain growing conditions exist like this year. With lower than anticipated acres, diversifying market risk with some confection or oil sunflower acres could be a good option in 2021.
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