SILVER SPRING, MD. – Increased production and oversupply signaled a bearish turn for US organic crops. Mercaris, a market data service and online trading platform for organic and non-GMO certified agricultural commodities, said in its recent Spring 2023 Commodity Outlook report the US organic soybean production and carryover stocks at the start of the 2022-23 marketing year had reached a record 14.1 million bus, up 14% from 2021-22. Robust imports had fueled the oversupply, slashing US organic soybean prices from $35 a bu down to $22.93 a bu in recent months.

The report also noted 2023-24 US organic corn prices were under pressure due to a projected 10% increase in production.

“The price decline is expected to impact the industry,” said Ryan Koory, vice president of economics at Mercaris.

He said Mercaris was forecasting an 18% decrease in harvested organic soybean acreage for 2023, hoping the reduction would stabilize prices.

The decline in organic soybean acreage allowed for possible expansion in organic spring wheat, and Mercaris was projecting a 3% increase in acreage for the US crop. Overall, total US organic wheat acreage for all classes was expected to decline by 2% due to severe drought, but improved conditions indicated an increase in both production and yields was likely despite the cut in acres.  

The abundant supply was creating opportunities for organic feed markets, which may provide some price support. Mercaris said it expected a 1% uptick in organic feed demand in 2023-24.