Kansas' wheat production down 23% year-over-year to 276.5 million bushels in 2011, USDA says; production of sorghum for grain down 36% to 110 million bushels

TOPEKA, Kansas , January 12, 2012 (press release) – Kansas corn for grain production of 449.4 million bushels was up 5 percent from the November forecast, but 23 percent less than the 2010 crop. This was the lowest Kansas corn production since the 2006 crop of 345 million bushels. Yields were the lowest since 1983 averaging 107 bushels per acre, up 7 bushels from the November forecast but 18 bushels below last year’s yield of 125 bushels. Planted area was 4.9 million acres, unchanged from the November forecast but 50,000 acres more than last year and the highest since 1936. Area harvested for grain was 4.2 million acres, down 100,000 from the November forecast and 450,000 acres less than last year. The area harvested for corn silage totaled 350,000 acres, up from 140,000 acres last year and the highest corn silage acreage harvested since 1980. Yields in 2011 averaged 11 tons per acre, down from 14 tons last year. Corn silage production was 3.85 million tons, up 96 percent from 2010.

Production of sorghum for grain in Kansas totaled 110.0 million bushels, down 15 percent from the November forecast and 36 percent less than last year, and the lowest level since 1964. The yield was 55 bushels per acre, unchanged from the November forecast but 21 bushels less than last year’s yield of 76 bushels. Kansas farmers planted 2.6 million acres, up 250,000 acres from last year. Area harvested for grain was 2.0 million acres, down 350,000 acres from the November forecast, and down 250,000 acres from 2010. This was the lowest harvested acreage since 1956. Sorghum silage production, at 595,000 tons, was up 55,000 tons from last year. Kansas leads the Nation in sorghum acreage harvested and production, accounting for 51 percent of the U.S. production.

Production of Kansas soybeans totaled 101.3 million bushels in 2011, down 1 percent from the November forecast and down 27 percent from last year’s production of 138.1 million bushels. This was the lowest soybean production in Kansas since 2007. Yield was 27 bushels per acre, unchanged from November but 5.5 bushels below 2010’s yield and the lowest
since 2003. Planted area was 4.0 million acres, down 300,000 acres from the previous year but still the second highest acreage planted in history. Harvested area was 3.75 million acres, down 500,000 from the area harvested last year. Area abandoned and for other uses was 250,000 acres, the largest since 2000.

Production of all types of hay was 4.40 million tons, down 8 percent from the October forecast and down 23 percent from last year. This was the lowest production since 1980. Alfalfa hay production, at 1.95 million tons, was unchanged from the October forecast but down 21 percent from 2010. This was the lowest production since 1956. Yield was 3.0 tons per acre, unchanged from the October forecast but down 0.8 ton from last year and tied with 1983 for the lowest yield since 1980. All Other hay production, at 2.45 million tons, was down 14 percent from October and down 24 percent from last year. This was the lowest production since 1983. Yield was 1.4 tons per acre, down 0.1 ton from October and 0.3 ton from last year. This was tied with 2006 for the lowest yield since 1980. Harvested acreage for alfalfa for the 2011 crop year in Kansas was 650,000 acres, unchanged from the final 2010 estimate and tied for the lowest acreage since 1941. Harvested area for all other hay for the 2011 crop year was 1,750,000 acres, down 150,000 acres from both the October forecast and last year. This was the lowest acreage since 2009.

Wheat production was 276.5 million bushels, down 23 percent from 2010. Yield was estimated at 35 bushels per acre, 10 bushels below last year and the lowest yield since 2007. Acres harvested for grain totaled 7.9 million, down 1 percent from 2010. This was the lowest harvested acreage since 1957. A total of 8.8 million acres were planted to wheat in the fall of 2010, 5 percent above the year before. This is the second lowest planted acreage since the 1957 crop when 7.2 million acres were seeded.

Kansas wheat stocks in all positions on December 1 totaled 292.2 million bushels, 13 percent less than last December, but still the second highest December 1 stocks since 1990. Wheat stored at off-farm locations (mills, elevators, warehouses, and processors) totaled 274.2 million bushels, which accounted for 94 percent of the total grain stocks. On-farm stocks, at 18.0 million bushels, were unchanged from a year earlier.

Kansas corn stocks in all locations, at 303.3 million bushels, were down 26 percent from last December. Off- farm stocks were 203.3 million bushels, down 28 percent and accounted for 67 percent of the total. On-farm stocks, at 100.0 million bushels, were down 23 percent from last December. This is the lowest December 1 corn stocks in Kansas since 2006.

Grain Sorghum in all positions totaled 102.0 million bushels, 20 percent below last year’s level. Off-farm stocks were 82.0 million bushels, down 24 percent and accounted for 80 percent of the total. On-farm stocks were 20.0 million bushels, unchanged from a year ago.

Kansas soybeans in all locations totaled 84.5 million bushels, a 5 percent decrease from December 2010. Off- farm stocks, at 63.5 million bushels, were down 4 percent from last year and accounted for 75 percent of the total soybean stocks. On-farm stocks totaled 21.0 million bushels, down 9 percent from the previous year’s stocks.

Wheat seeded in Kansas in the fall of 2011 for the 2012 crop totaled 9.5 million acres, up 700,000 acres from the previous year's acreage of 8.8 million. This was the largest area seeded to wheat in Kansas since the fall of 2007. The higher than normal row crop abandonment allowed for additional wheat seeding. Wheat seeding began the second week of September and was ahead of average by mid-October. Ninety-nine percent of the wheat had been seeded by November 6th.

Wheat emerged was ahead of average by mid-October and the crop was 97 percent emerged by November 26th. On November 26th, wheat condition was rated 47 percent good to excellent, 40 percent fair and 13percent poor to very poor, compared to 68 percent good to excellent last year. On September 11, topsoil moisture was 74 percent very short to short, 25 percent adequate and 1 percent surplus. Moisture conditions showed improvement throughout the wheat planting season and by late November, topsoil moisture was 44 percent very short to short, 53 percent adequate and 3 percent surplus.

Winter wheat seeded in the United States for harvest in 2012 is estimated at 41.9 million acres, up 3 percent from 2011. Approximate class acreage breakdowns are: Hard Red Winter, 30.1 million acres; Soft Red Winter, 8.37 million acres; and White Winter, 3.49 million acres.

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