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You Are Here Growers > Marketing > Week in Review

April 6, 2015


United States sunflower production totaled just over 2.2 billion pounds in 2014, up about 9% from the 2013 crop's size. That's according to the 2014 U.S. Sunflower Crop Quality Report, compiled annually by the National Sunflower Association, in cooperation with the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service. The report also says the U.S. average yield per acre - at 1,469 pounds - was 6.5% higher than 2013's 1,380-pound average. Planted area, at 1.56 million acres, was just slightly below that of 2013. Area harvested in 2014, however, increased by 3% from the prior year, at 1.51 million acres. Read the entire report, including the state-by-state breakdown, on the NSA website: The NSA has produced the report every year since 1981.


The NSA's annual U.S. Sunflower Crop Quality Report for 2014 also takes a look at seed quality. The report indicated an average oil content of 41.5% for the surveyed oil-type samples and average test weight of 30.1 lbs. Those numbers compared with 41.9% and 30.1 lbs, respectively, for the 2013 crop year samples. On the non-oil side, the 2014 samples' average test weight was 21.0 lbs. Test weight the previous year averaged 22.0 lbs; in 2012, 22.4 lbs. Of the 2014 non-oil samples, 79.7% of the seeds were over 20/64 in size. That number compares with 85.4% in 2013 and 84.1% in the 2012 samples.


According to the USDA Planting Intentions Report sunflower growers intend to plant a total of 1.79 million acres in 2015, up 14 percent from last year. Area intended for oil type varieties, at 1.49 million acres, is up 27 percent from 2014. The area intended for non-oil varieties, estimated at 301,000 acres, is down 23 percent from last year. The report reflects trade thoughts that oil type acres would show an increase and non-oil would have a decrease in acres from 2014. See the entire report, including the breakdown by state on our website,


USDA also reported sunflower stocks in all positions as of March 1, 2015. Seed stocks totaled 696 million pounds, down 14 percent from March 1, 2014. All stocks stored on farms totaled 257 million pounds and off-farm stocks totaled 439 million pounds. Stocks of oil type sunflower seed are 503 million pounds; of this total, 195 million pounds are on-farm stocks and 308 million pounds are off-farm stocks. Non-oil sunflower stocks totaled 193 million pounds, with 61.4 million pounds stored on the farm and 131 million pounds stored off the farm.


ADM has reached an agreement to buy AOR, an edible oil bottling company based in Belgium. ADM's Oilseeds Processing business president Matt Jansen says this acquisition will allow ADM to expand its product offerings and customer base in Europe, offering an entry into the continental European retail and foodservice markets and a better ability to export value-added products internationally.


The April issue of The Sunflower is now online at This final issue of the 2014-15 publishing year features profiles on North Dakota and Kansas producers, a look at NSA research funding, and a historical look at how sunflower came to the Red River Valley . This is the final issue of the 2014-15 magazine year but we're always looking for story ideas as we plan for next year's issues. If you've got a story idea, let us know! Email Jody at And if you haven't signed up for a digital copy of the magazine, now is a great time to do that. Visit our website at, click "sign up" and follow the directions. If you're already subscribed to our newsletter, just lot into your account and sign up for the digital edition of the magazine.


Register now for the 2015 NSA Summer Seminar. This year's Summer Seminar will be held June 23-25 at Madden's Resort in Brainerd, MN. Register online at A block of rooms is being held under the "National Sunflower Association" for June 23- 25, 2015. The rooms will be held until May 21, so make your reservation now! Visit our website for a link to make online reservations at Madden's and for more information on the resort. The program is being finalized now so check back soon for more information. See you in Minnesota!


June 23-25, 2015 - 2015 NSA Summer Seminar, Brainerd, MN
January 12-13, 2016 - NSA Research Forum, Fargo, ND


USDA March US acreage report came out opposite what most traders were looking for. In the report USDA estimated corn plantings were more than the trade expected, but down from a year ago. Soybean plantings were estimated at less than expected, but up from a year ago. USDA estimated all planted crop acres at 324.8 million down 2 million from last year. Most of the drop in total planted acres versus last year was in ND, SD, NE, KS, OK and TX. This is probably a sign that some decisions are still to be made in these states on what crop to plant this year. The March report gives farmers a benchmark to see what others are thinking of planting in 2015. It also gives them the chance to change their minds and make planting adjustments to take advantage of market opportunities. Given the potential of a drier or perhaps drought year some farmers might hedge against this by planting sunflowers. With the March reports factored into the market the attention shifts to the South American harvest and to spring weather in the Midwest ahead of planting.

For sunflower prices at various locations refer to our website Daily Market News.

Weekly Prices Recorded on Monday, April 6, 2015 ($/CWT)
  Deliver Last Year Last Week This Week Change 2015 New Crop
  Chicago Oil          
  Nearby 41.43 30.49 31.26 +.77 31.58
  Fargo, ND          
  NuSun 20.85 19.15 19.50 +.35 19.20
  Enderlin, ND          
  NuSun 20.85 19.10 19.50 +.40 19.10
  Goodland, KS          
  NuSun 19.00 19.60 19.95 +.35 19.95

recorded on Monday, April 6, 2015
(dollars per 100 lb. internal U.S. location)
  Last Year Last Week This Week Change
Soybean Oil 40.43 29.99 30.76 +.77
Cotton Oil (pbsy) 71.43 45.49 49.26 +.3.77
Corn Oil 47.00 39.00 39.00 NC
Prices recorded here are believed to be reliable at the time of publication. Individual companies have the right to correct any errors that may occur. Contact these facilities for complete market details

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