State Announces Crop Expectations: More Corn, Fewer Peanuts

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services announced expectations for 2013 crop yields. Rain has had varied effects on the commonwealth’s crops.

Corn is expected to yield 145 bushels per acre, up 42 bushels from 2012. 

“Generally speaking, most corn producers are having a much better season than 2012 due to plentiful rains. However, the corn yield will suffer in some areas due to waterlogged soil conditions caused by excessive rainfall,” said Tony Banks, a commodity marketing specialist for Virginia Farm Bureau Federation. “Soybeans are also doing relatively well,” Banks said. Soybean producers expect to harvest 42 bushels per acre, the same as they did last year.

Abundant rainfall this summer has not been good for all crops, though. “In some instances the rain has been excessive and will have a negative impact on yield and quality of different crops. For example, excessive rain at the harvest damaged both the wheat and barley crops, especially grain quality,” Banks said.

The winter wheat yield is expected to be 64 bushels per acres, down from 65 bushels per acre last year. Barley yields are predicted to be 78 bushels per acre, down 4 bushels from last year.

Hay producers expect 90,000 acres of alfalfa hay with an average yield of 3.2 tons per acre. With regard to other types of hay, yields are expected to be 1.2 million acres, with an average of 2.5 tons per acre.

“This wet summer also is taking a toll on cotton and flue-cured tobacco,” Banks said. 

The cotton yield is anticipated to average 1,050 pounds per acre, 68 pounds less than last year. If that forecast is accurate, production will be 151,000 bales, 24 percent less than in 2012.

Flue-cured tobacco producers expect 2,300 pounds per acre, 100 pounds less than in 2012. Burley yields are expected to be 1,800 pounds per acre, 50 pounds more than last year. Fire-cured tobacco yields are 2,000 pounds per acre, 300 pounds less than in 2012.

Peanut producers expect to harvest 14,000 acres, 6,000 less than last year. Yields are expected to be 3,500 pounds per acre, 700 pounds less than last year. The overall production will be 49 million pounds, which is 42 percent less than last year.

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