Sunflower markets

Sunflowers (Photo courtesy of Amberlyn Brown.)

This week sunflower prices continued to move lower as the market continues its transition toward the 2023-24 market year.

Trading in the week ahead will focus on the U.S. Department of Agriculture Grain Stocks report that will be released this week. Traders are expecting sunflower seed stocks to be up significantly from a year ago and the five-year average after last year’s large crop.

According to USDA, 2022 sunflower production totaled 2.81 billion pounds, up 48% from 2021. We had the second highest yield on record for the U.S. for oil-type sunflower varieties with the average yield in Minnesota and North Dakota both setting record highs.

Challenging weather conditions early on and logistics made it difficult for the market to use a greater percentage of last year’s crop and led to the build-up in seed stocks. Moving forward, it may be hard to gather significant forward momentum with the larger carryover of oil-type seed stocks as well as seasonal harvest pressure being just around the corner. Up next for traders will be when USDA gives its first estimate of 2023 sunflower production in October.

The weather forecast for the next two weeks continues to predict above normal temperatures in the sunflower growing region. This bodes well for crop dry down as the sunflower crop continues to mature at a rapid rate. Harvest continues to move along in Kansas and Texas and will crank up in other states very soon.