Tobacco Acres Up in Central North Carolina

USDA will release their planting intentions reports today at noon eastern. Don Nicholson, regional agronomist with NCDA in Harnett, Wake, Johnston, Wilson, & Wayne Counties talks about how he thinks acres will be distributed in his region of North Carolina:

“I think cotton acreage will drop because of the price drop and how much it costs to produce that crop. Recently the price has increased, so there has been some more interest, but I think in my region we will lose acreage. There will probably be an increase in grain sorghum, there is still some interest out there in sorghum. Corn will stay pretty flat as far as acres go, maybe a bit more as prices are attractive. Soybeans will stay flat. Wheat acres in my region are very much up. Most of the crop looks very good but we could use some warm weather to let it mature up more.”

Nicholson also expects to see an increase in tobacco acres:

“Tobacco acreage in my region will be up again this year. Some growers are increasing with significant acres, while some are staying the same. The curing space will be the deciding factor in how many acres they can produce.”

Nicholson says he anticipates peanut acreage in his area to be flat with previous years:

“Most everyone is planting if they can get a contract, they are pretty close to what they planted last year, but it will probably be increasing the Virginias and decreasing the Runners in my area because Runners are a little cheaper as far as contracts go. The buying companies are more interested in Virginias also.”

In spite of the lingering cool temperatures, Nicholson says producers in his area are optimistic about the 2013 growing season:

“Everyone has a good attitude going into this season. Commodity prices are still fairly attractive and most growers with a decent crop will be making money.”

NCDA Area Agronomist Don Nicholson. is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.