Get the right price for your corn silage

Thanks to the combination of 5% fewer acres of corn in the United States this year and a slightly reduced estimate of yield per acre from 2021, estimates of global agricultural supply and demand (WASDE ) from the USDA in September forecast that 7.7% less corn will be produced this year. compared to the last. These tight supplies that keep prices high give even more weight to the annual question: “What is corn silage worth this year?” »

First, grain trade prices along with local market conditions usually form the basis of a silage contract between a corn producer and a dairy farm. The buyer and seller will need to agree on the sources and values ​​to be used for this baseline.

To then translate bushel prices into tons of silage, Joe Lauer of the University of Wisconsin-Madison said the recommendation is often to multiply the grain price by 7.5, 8 or 8.5 because there is generally 8 bushels of grain in a ton of silage. Trading by the tonne rather than the acre gives a much more accurate picture of yield, the corn agronomist added.

More detailed analysis
Especially in times of high grain prices, the value of the corn farmer’s harvest for dry grain essentially serves as a price floor. Lauer advised a salesman to calculate the potential gross revenue from the grain given the expected yield, subtract all the costs of harvesting the grain, then add back the value of the fertilizer from the removed stalk that would otherwise have remained.

“The result of these calculations is then divided by the estimated corn silage yield to give an equivalent price per tonne equal to the net grain yield,” Lauer explained in an agronomy fact sheet.

Several production factors can affect how grain yield is estimated. Lauer first noted that the timing of harvest must be considered because grain yield can still climb 5% to 12% when the grain is 50% grain milk. However, no further yield will develop after the black layer stage.

Growing conditions and type of hybrid will also affect grain development. Research has found that brown midrib (BMR) hybrids have significantly lower grain equivalents than conventional or even bioengineered hybrids, Lauer said.

The silage buyer will typically bear harvesting costs and use those numbers to adjust the price against the price of standing corn, he continued. They can also factor in the cost of having corn and straw to feed instead of silage. Forage quality can also play a role in the discussion depending on milk returns.

To simplify these calculations, the University of Wisconsin-Madison has developed a spreadsheet and smartphone apps that corn growers and silage buyers can use. Find more information here.

To comment, email your feedback to [email protected]
(vs) Hoard’s Slag Information 2022
September 26, 2022

About Marco C. Nichols

Check Also

Profit Watch: Effects of High Inputs | Profitability

This year’s harvest is not over yet. There’s still plenty of harvest in the northern …