Cargill and Continental Grain team up to buy Sanderson Farms

Published: Aug. 10, 2021 at 7:59 AM CDT
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - This week’s Crop Progress Report shows the corn crop across the country got a little bit better over the past week. It’s now rated 64% good to excellent—gaining back the 2% it lost in the ratings the week before. But it’s still the crop’s third lowest rating for this late in the season over the past 12 years. The main reason for the jump this week’s improvement was the 11% jump in condition for the Illinois corn crop. Maturity of the crop is right on schedule as 95% of the corn has silked while 56% of the crop is in the dough stage, but only 8% of the corn has dented—slightly behind average. The soybean crop didn’t change over the past week as it is once again rated 60% good to excellent—like corn, the third lowest rating for this late in the season in the last 12 years. Development of the soybeans is ahead of schedule, though, as 91% of the plants are blooming and 72% are setting pods.

Again this week we have some of the best looking crops in the country as our corn is rated 77% good to excellent and our soybeans are rated 74% good to excellent. Maturity is also ahead of normal with 92% of the corn silking and 42% of the crop is in the dough stage. In the soybeans fields, 94% of the plants are blooming and 73% are setting pods. State farmers also have 30% of their oats harvested, a little behind last year as the crop is rated 75% good to excellent this week. The fall potato harvest in Wisconsin is now 14% finished with the potatoes rated 95% good to excellent this week. The hay also looks good as farmers have now made 63% of their third crop as hay is rated 74% good to excellent this week. Topsoil moisture ratings, which will obviously change in next week’s report, are now at 76% adequate to surplus, 16% short and 8% very short.

The big just keep getting bigger. In a major announcement yesterday, Cargill and Continental Grain said they are joining together to buy Sanderson Farms, the Mississippi based chicken processor for just over 4 and a half billion dollars. Sanderson Farms is the third largest chicken processor in the country behind only Tyson and Pilgrim’s Pride. Cargill and Continental plan to combine Sanderson with Wayne Farms with the new operation producing 15% of the country’s chicken—just behind the 16% produced by Pilgrim’s Pride. They will continue to operate the big majority of their operations in the Southeastern part of the country and close the deal around the end of this year or early 2022.

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