While all the focus was on the North Carolina State Fair, National Ag Statistics released the latest crop forecast for North Carolina and other states, and NC Ag Commissioner Steve Troxler is pleased with the results. He says this year North Carolina really is making up for a not-so-great 2011, yields for all the major field crops continue to look really good, and are up in most categories.
“At the State Fair we talked about a bumper crop of fun, but I like to talk about bumper crops in the field. This year North Carolina is making up for a not so great 2011. Yields for our major field crops continue to look very good.
We do have some east coast counties under the influence of Hurricane Sandy. These figures were taken before any impact could be taken into effect, but we are forecasting a cotton yield of about 910 pounds per acre and total production is projected to be 1.1 million bales which is 7% higher than last year, despite the decrease in acreage. Though we did lose a lot to Hurricane Irene. Hopefully we won’t see that this year. Some cotton is already in the bale, but there is still a lot in the field.
Corn, for the most part, is in the bin. Yield is projected to be about 120 bushels per acre, that is 36 bushels higher than last year. Total production is estimated at 93.6 million bushels. That is 37% more than 2011.
Peanuts are another bright spot. We are projecting 3700 pounds per acre, which is a really high yield.
Soybeans should be good as well. We are projecting 35 bushels per acre, which would be a record.
The reports on Hurricane Sandy are that the winds are gusting up to about 40 mph and the rain has not been torrential. So when this blows past we can get the rest of the crops out of the field.
With flue cured tobacco most of that is in the barn. Last year the hurricane ruined the tobacco crop in eastern NC. Thus, we only produced 248 million pounds. This year we are forecasting 394 million pounds, a 59% increase. Projected yield is about 2400 pounds per acre, 55% higher than 2011.
Hurricane Sandy just looks like a big rain event for us here in NC. There will likely be some coastal flooding from the storm surge.”