U.S. farmers will increase plantings of the eight major crops this year by four per cent as high commodity prices encourage growers to replenish low stockpiles, the government said Feb. 14.
The U.S. Agriculture Department said farmers will sow 255.3 million acres this year, up 10.1 million acres from 2010, with all major crops seeing an increase except rice.
Global grain supplies have been tightening for months as droughts and floods coupled with unrelenting demand for feed, food and fuel caused wheat and corn prices to more than double from last summer’s lows.
USDA forecast corn planting rising four per cent, or by 3.8 million acres, with soybeans increasing 600,000 acres, or nearly one per cent. Meanwhile, wheat is forecast up 3.4 million aces, or 6.3 per cent and upland cotton up two million acres, or 18 per cent.