U.S. Soybean Acres to Top Corn for the First Time Since 1983

(Bloomberg) -- U.S. plantings of soybeans will exceed corn this year for the first time in 35 years, according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture survey.

Growers in the U.S. planted 89.6 million acres of the oilseed, while 89.1 million acres were planted in corn, the most valuable U.S. crop, according to data released Friday. Both were within the range of forecasts made in a Bloomberg survey of analysts. Farmers also planted 13.2 million acres of spring wheat, above the highest forecast.

U.S. crop markets have been roiled this year by tit-for-tat trade threats among major buyers of farm goods including China, Canada and Mexico, which have pushed down prices even as global crop demand is outstripping supply.

U.S. tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese goods set to take effect on July 6 may jeopardize U.S. soybean sales to the Asian nation, valued at more than $12 billion last year, according to USDA statistics. China is targeting American farming goods with counter-tariffs.

China is the world’s largest importer of soybeans and America’s largest customer in the trade.

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.