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September 14, 2017
Virginia’s Cotton Forecast up 90 Percent from 2016
Peanut, soybean, flue-cured tobacco production also up
Contact: Elaine Lidholm, VDACS – 804.786.7686; NASS Contact: Herman Ellison, 804.771.2493 or 800.772.0670

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) September Crop Production report shows large increases in projected yields for cotton and peanuts.

“Scattered rains in August provided enough moisture to improve yield prospects,” said Herman Ellison, Virginia state statistician with NASS. “Cotton, peanut and soybean yield forecasts all increased from last month.”

Virginia cotton production is projected to be 190,000 bales, up 23 percent from the August forecast and up 90 percent from 2016. Cotton yields are forecast to average 1,099 pounds per acre, up 94 pounds from last month and up 432 pounds per acre from the previous year. Producers expect to harvest 83,000 acres, up 9,000 acres from the August forecast and up 11,000 acres from 2016. Cotton bolls opening is 19 percent as of Sept. 3, up slightly from last week and last year at 10 percent and 17 percent, respectively.

Peanut farmers in Virginia anticipate harvesting 116 million pounds for 2017, up 49 percent from last year. Acres expected to be harvested total 27,000 acres, up 6,000 from last year. Producers expect a yield of 4,300 pounds per acre, up 600 pounds from 2016.

Soybean production for Virginia is forecast at 23 million bushels, up five percent from the August forecast and up seven percent from 2016. Yield was estimated at 39 bushels per acre, up two bushels from last month and up three bushels from a year ago. Acreage for harvest as beans was estimated at 590,000 acres, down 10,000 acres from the previous year. Soybeans dropping leaves was at five percent as of Sept. 3.

Corn production in Virginia is forecast at 46.2 million bushels, unchanged from the August forecast and down eight percent from the previous crop. Yield was estimated at 140 bushels per acre, unchanged from last month and down eight bushels from the 2016 level. Acres for harvest as grain were estimated at 330,000 acres, down 10,000 acres from 2016. Corn harvested for grain is now underway with 21 percent harvested as of Sept. 3, up from five percent harvested last week.

Virginia flue-cured tobacco production is forecast at 49.5 million pounds, up five percent from the August forecast and up two percent from 2016. Yield was projected at 2,250 pounds per acre, unchanged from last month and up 50 pounds from the 2016 crop. Harvested acreage was estimated at 22,000 acres, unchanged from last year's crop. By Sept. 3, 51 percent of Virginia’s flue-cured tobacco crop has been harvested, up slightly from 46 percent last week and 45 percent last year.

NASS gathered data for the September Agricultural Yield Survey earlier this month. The monthly yield surveys begin in May with the focus on small grains through July and shifts to row crops beginning in August through the remainder of the growing season. “Thank you to all the farmers for taking time to complete the September Agricultural Yield Survey,” Ellison said. “We appreciate your efforts during the busy growing season.”

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