**A new report by USDA says while honeybee populations increased slightly from last year, it’s not a true reflection of colony stresses beekeepers are overcoming.

USDA statistician Joshua O’Rear says while honeybee colonies increased three percent in April over last year, fluctuations throughout the year are trending negative.

O’Rear says it’s difficult to track what causes loss but more than half of beekeepers say varroa mites were the largest stressor last year.

**Ethanol production in the U.S. declined for a second straight week, while stockpiles dropped to the lowest level in almost seven months.

Output of the biofuel fell to 1.002 million barrels a day, on average, in the week that ended on July 28th.

According to the Energy Information Administration, that’s down from 1.012 million a week earlier and the lowest since the week ending June 16.

Inventories fell to 20.852 million barrels, down from 21.529 million and the lowest since the first week of January.

**A Farm Futures survey of U.S. farmers shows this year’s corn production could fall ten percent compared to the record crop of 2016, due to lower yields and acreage.

The average yield came in at 164 bushels per acre with corn acres down about four percent, which equates to a total crop of 13.6 billion bushels.

Market analyst Bryce Knorr says lower corn production could be enough to stabilize that market, and perhaps produce rallies to move grain after harvest.

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