Although the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) had forecast an atypically warm Q4 for much of the U.S., an early snowstorm event in October followed by record-breaking cold throughout much of the Midwest has belied that forecast.
Already troubled by spring flooding, delayed planting, and a challenging growing season, farmers are now facing early snow and freezing temperatures during harvest. Crops like corn, soybeans, and sugar beets have lagged last year’s harvest pace by as much as 20 or 30 percent, and some are now a full three weeks behind schedule. Thousands of acres of unharvested beets, for example, were abandoned.
The cold weather will also arrest the natural gas injection seasonal inventory build, which has likely seen the last positive number until the spring thaw.