Yields for non-GMO corn are averaging between 220 and 225 bushels per acre on some of farmer Joe Zumwalt’s better ground in the Mississippi River bottoms. The non-GMO crop leaves Warsaw, Ill., and is shipped down the river for export to markets such as China and Japan.
"We were a little worried early," Zumwalt tells Farm Journal Radio’s Pam Fretwell. "It was wet and then, like everyone else, we got dry this summer. But with that lack of rain, that was about perfect for this type of soil, and we ended up with just some bumper crops on these acres."
Zumwalt draws on yield data dating back to 1988 coupled with digital soil maps compiled by the state of Illinois to maximize precision and profitability.
"You can really create a prescription for every acre," he says. "You know what you’ve taken off, you know what it’s capable of doing, and when you do that, you can better pinpoint and be more precise about your fertilizer applications. In the end, it comes down to economics as producers."
Click the play button below to hear more about harvest so far and the challenges presented at planting:
Click the play button below to watch Zumwalt unload corn on the go: