While we knew reproducing last year's record 243 million bushel crop was not likely this year, the August 12 USDA-NASS crop report provided us a better prediction than expected.
Corn production in Kentucky was forecast at 200 million bushels, down 18 percent from the previous crop. Yield was estimated at 138 bushels per acre, down 32 bushels from the 2013 level. Acres for harvest as grain were estimated at 1.45 million acres, up 20,000 acres from 2013.
Rain has been scarce in much of our largest corn growing areas, especially along the southern tier.
Following an informal poll of growers from across the state, we anticipated the average yield for 2014 to be about 130 bushels per acre.
U.S. corn production was forecast at 15.2 billion bushels. If realized, this will be the highest U.S. production on record. Based on conditions as of August 1, yields are expected to average 167.4 bushels per acre, up 8.6 bushels from 2013. Area harvested for grain is forecast at 83.8 million acres, unchanged from June but down 4 percent from 2013.
Across the nation, the corn crop is rated 73% good to excellent. In Kentucky, USDA-NASS reported only 59% rating good to excellent.
Be sure to follow us on Twitter (@kycornfed) for the latest crop updates provided by USDA-NASS, University of Kentucky agronomists and producers. You can also watch the Twitter feed on our website at www.kycorn.org.