Planting of the 1995/96 crop was the slowest in decades—until the 2019/20 new crop saw even slower planting. The 1995/96 crop was 77 percent planted by Jun. 2, while the 2019/20 crop was only 67 percent planted, a 10-point difference.
Aside from planting progress percentages, there are other notable similarities between the summer of 1995 and this summer. In mid-July 1995, a historic heatwave hit the Midwest, which had a significantly negative impact on corn development, and in turn yield and overall production. That season’s crop came in more than 10 percent below the five-year average.
For the 2019/20 crop, earlier wet weather and flooding were followed by a heatwave that spread across Midwestern states to the East Coast from Jul. 19-21. Temperatures reached daily highs in the upper nineties and lower hundreds, and nighttime lows were in the lower eighties to upper seventies, likely further stressing the crop. USDA anticipates a production decline of less than 4 percent from the recent five-year average for the new crop—at least for now.