Purchase photos

Corn harvest prospects remain bright





Corn prices advanced slightly Tuesday in response to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's smaller-than-anticipated boost in corn production estimates.

Soybeans, however, took it on the chin with a bigger boost than market forces were planning from Tuesday's crop forecast.

Estimates put the size of the nation's expected corn crop at 14 billion bushels, according to the USDA report. Yields are expected to average 167.4 bushels per acre, an increase of 8.6 bushels from a year ago.

Soybean production, however, was forecast at 3.82 billion bushels, up 16 percent from last year.

Kansas is expected to have a dramatically better year, at least as far as corn is concerned.

Forecasters suggest the state's farmers will harvest 543.7 million bushels of corn.

That's an average of 145 bushels per acre -- 18 bushels more than a year ago.

Last year, Kansas farmers raised 508 million bushels of corn.

In most crop-reporting districts, corn production will increase this year.

Northwest Kansas, for example, will be up more than 15 million bushels, rebounding from poor weather last year. Yields in both northwest and west-central crop reporting districts are expected to hit 116 bushels per acre.

The southwest district is forecast to hit 206 bushels per acre, much of that on the aid of irrigation.

Kansas grain sorghum production is forecast at 187.2 million bushels.

That means Kansas will remain the top grain sorghum producing state in the nation, beating out Texas by almost 50 million bushels. Kansas will produce nearly half of the nation's grain sorghum crop.

Kansas soybean production is forecast at 150.8 million bushels. Average yields won't change, but the extra production will come from another 700,000 acres planted to soybeans this year.

Kansas wheat production at 235 million bushels is unchanged from a month ago, but it's the smallest crop since 1969. Average yields were estimated at 28 bushels per acre, the lowest since 1995.