ST. LOUIS -- Doane Advisory Services, a multi-media provider of information and analysis to agriculture, is preparing to release its annual survey and forecast of U.S. corn and soybean production.



The research included nearly 3,000 driving miles through seven Midwestern states by Doane economists, and the resulting report represents more than two-thirds of the U.S. planted acres of corn and soybeans.



Doane will publish its findings to its clients and subscribers on Aug. 4, a full week in advance of the USDA's first official crop production report for the 2006-2007 crop year.



However, in a significant break from tradition, Doane also will offer this value-added product for sale to other interested parties, such as professional traders, investment managers and financial risk managers. The report will be accessible to the public on and after Aug. 8 at www.doane.com/forecast.



"Doane has been compiling this information for more than 20 years, and our record in crop surveying and forecasting is unmatched by any other paid advisory service," says Ken Morrison, Doane's managing director. "Our clients depend on this 'ground truth' of U.S. corn and soy crop conditions from Doane's experts to provide insight necessary to make informed price, risk, and production decisions."



Results of Doane's August surveys and forecasts have, on average, proven to be more reliable indicators of the final production estimates for corn and soybeans than USDA's August estimates (when compared to USDA's final report released each January), Morrison said.



The decision to share the survey results with the public recognizes, in part, the importance these crops pose as alternative energy sources.



"Global demand for all energy sources and energy costs remain near record levels, but the global supply of grains is approaching the lowest levels since 1980 - 1981," Morrison said. "Given the rapid growth and evolution of agriculture as energy alternatives, we felt obligated to make this valuable research readily available to the public after distribution to our clients and subscribers."



Doane also conducts an annual Crop Survey and Forecast of U.S. winter wheat each April. It was one of the first advisory services to recognize this year's decline in U.S. hard winter wheat production in the drought-stricken areas of key southwestern production areas.



Vance Publishing Corp. acquired Doane Agricultural Services (now Doane Advisory Services) in October of 2005 and incorporated it into its food360 division. Doane Advisory Services operates out of St. Louis and provides a variety of economic advisory products, both research and forecasting, such as Doane Agricultural Report, AgServ, Doane Commercial Advisor and Doane.com.



Food360, based in Lenexa, Kansas, was formed in January 2005 by combining three divisions (Produce Division, Crops Division and Livestock Division) to bring a full-chain view to the food industry, encompassing every point in the chain from production agriculture to retailers and foodservice.



Since its founding in 1937, Vance Publishing has been a recognized leader in business information and communications. Vance serves select business-to-business markets with 24 magazines, a host of newsletters, Web offerings, economic advisory services, event management, proprietary research and analysis, and data and custom media products.



SOURCE: Doane Advisory Services via Business Wire.