The government's first corn production forecast of the season released Wednesday anticipates a good 2015 harvest in Kansas.
The National Agricultural Statistics Service projected the state's corn production to come in at 570 million bushels, based on Aug. 1 crop conditions. If realized, that would be 1 percent above last year's production.
"Overall, we feel good about it for Kansas," said Greg Krissek, CEO of the Kansas Corn Growers Association.
Industry officials look forward to the agency's August report because as the season's first official estimate of the size of the crop. It gives them a chance to see if the government confirms what they have been thinking, he said. And so far the growing season in Kansas has been "pretty good" with excellent planting opportunities and mostly good weather across the state.
"Our feeling is (this crop) is in line pretty similarly to where we were last year, especially on production, and that is what this report says," Krissek said.
The government's upbeat forecast comes despite 1 percent fewer anticipated harvested acres than a year ago in Kansas. The agency estimates 3.75 million acres will be harvested, but higher yields will more than make up for the lower acreage.
Corn yields in Kansas are forecast at 152 bushels per acre, up 3 bushels from a year ago.
Nationwide, corn production is forecast to be at 13.7 billion bushels. That is down 4 percent from the nation's record production a year ago, but is still the third largest U.S. corn crop on record.
The report's production estimates for other major Kansas crops include:
- Sorghum production in Kansas is anticipated to be up 15 percent to 229 million bushels.
- This year's soybean crop is forecast to come in at 133 million bushels, down 7 percent in Kansas.
- Winter wheat production in Kansas is estimated at 334 million bushels, up 36 percent from last year's drought-plagued crop.
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