Kansas grain silos more than half full as farmers wait for higher prices

Many Kansas farmers have decided to hold their grain on their farms or at area co-ops instead of selling, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Grain prices plunged by a quarter to a third from early summer until midfall but have since retraced some of those losses.

As of Dec. 1, Kansas corn stockpiles were up 13 percent over 2013, at 381 million bushels. Of that, 130 million bushels were stored on farms, up 30 percent, and 251 million bushels were in off-farm storage, up 8 percent.

Sorghum stored totaled 156 million bushels, up 11 percent from last year. On-farm stockpiles of 17 million bushels were up 21 percent from last year, while off-farm holdings of 139 million bushels were up 10 percent.

Soybeans totaled 105 million bushels, up 14 percent. On-farm stockpiles of 24 million bushels are down 13 percent from a year ago, while off-farm stockpiles, at 81.4 million bushels, are up 25 percent from 2013.

Farmers did better with the wheat harvest, selling much of it earlier in the year when prices were higher. The amount of wheat stored was down 8 percent as of Dec. 1 compared to Dec. 1, 2013, at 238 million bushels. On-farm stockpiles of 13.5 million bushels were up 17 percent from 2013, and off-farm storage of 225 million bushels was down 9 percent.

The state added a small amount of grain storage capacity in 2014: 25 million bushels of capacity were added for a total of 1.03 billion bushels of off-farm storage, while 380 million bushels of on-farm storage was reported by the USDA, the same as the year before.