An ongoing study by commodity adviser Al Kluis of Kluis Commodities has led him to believe another breakthrough is needed to further increase corn and soybean yields. Kluis began the study in 2012 and after devoting himself to the topic this past summer, says a new breakthrough will be needed to push corn and soybean trends to an annual production increase of 3% to 4%. Historically, yield data for corn did not change much from 1865 to the early 1930s. However, corn farming changed forever in the late 1930s with three big agronomic advances that have increased yields over the last 90 years. The rapid adoption of double-cross hybrid corn in the late 1930s, the adoption of chemical fertilizer and soil tests and widespread adoption of genetically modified seed have increased corn yields dramatically.

But what will the next big advancement be to continue propelling grain production forward? Kluis says it could have something to do with cultivating seeds that better withstand wet weather.

Read more on corn and soybean production and Kluis’ observations here.