USDA Projects Top Production

Aided by the warm, dry weather during the growing season and despite recent freezing temperatures in some areas, U.S. corn production is forecast at a near-record level, according to the Crop Production report, released Oct. 9 by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).

Corn production is forecast at 13.0 billion bushels, up 8 percent from last year and down only 0.2 percent from the 2007 record. Corn yield is expected to average 164.2 bushels per acre, up 10.3 bushels above last year. If realized, this yield will be the highest on record. Corn growers are expected to harvest 79.3 million acres, down 1 percent from the September forecast.

Soybean production remains on target for a record-high year and is forecast at 3.25 billion bushels, up 10 percent from 2008. Based on Oct. 1 conditions, soybean yields are expected to average 42.4 bushels per acre, up 2.7 percent from 2008. If realized, this will be the third highest yield on record. Growers are expected to harvest 76.6 million acres of soybeans, which is the largest area on record.

All cotton production is forecast at 13.0 million bales, down 3 percent from last month, but up 1 percent from last year. Heavy rain showers in the southeastern states during the early part of September caused a delay in cotton fieldwork and crop progress. All cotton yield is expected to average 807 pounds per harvested acre.

The October Crop Production report contains estimates of yield and production for corn, soybeans, and other spring-planted row crops, in addition to U.S. citrus production and yield. NASS interviewed nearly 15,000 producers to obtain probable yield. These growers will continue to be surveyed during the growing season to provide indication of average yields.

All NASS reports, including the Crop Production report, are available online at www.nass.usda.gov.

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