USDA forecasts higher corn, sorghum, cotton production in Texas


By Jessica Domel

Despite challenges from Mother Nature, farmers produced over 50 percent more corn and grain sorghum in Texas this year.

Corn

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), 291 million bushels of corn were produced in Texas this year.

That’s up 54 percent from the 189 million bushels realized in 2018 but down seven percent from the 314 million bushels produced in 2017.

It’s 10 percent lower than 2016 totals.

Yields averaged 142 bushels per acre, up 34 bushels from the 2018 average.

About 2.05 million acres of corn were harvested for grain in Texas this year. That’s up 17 percent from last year.

Grain sorghum

With yields averaging 68 bushels an acre this year, Texas growers produced 95.2 million bushels of grain sorghum.

That’s up 53 percent from the 62.1 million bushels of sorghum grown in 2018.

It also tops the 94.5 million bushels produced in 2017.

Yields are up 22 bushels an acre from last year and five bushels per acre from 2017.

About 1.4 million acres of grain sorghum were harvested for grain in Texas this year, which is up four percent from last year.

Cotton

Texas farmers produced more cotton despite lower yields this year.

Texas upland cotton production totaled 7.8 million bales this year. That’s up 14 percent, or 950,000 bales, from 2018. It’s down 1.47 million bales from 2017.

Yields averaged 624 pounds per acre, which is down 132 pounds per acre from last year.

It’s down 185 pounds per acre from 2017.

About six million acres have been harvested in Texas this year. That’s up 38 percent from 2018.

Peanuts

USDA predicts a better year, production-wise, for Texas peanut producers.

Growers are forecast to produce 495 million pounds of peanuts this year.

If realized, that’s a seven percent increase over the 464 million pounds produced last year.

Nearly 700 million pounds of peanuts were grown in Texas in 2017.

Yields are forecast at 3,300 pounds per acre. That’s up 100 pounds per acre over 2018.

Harvested acreage is forecast up three percent to 150,000 acres.

Soybeans

Texas soybean production is forecast to fall for the fourth year in a row.

USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) forecasts 1.97 million bushels of soybeans will be grown in Texas this year.

If realized, that’s a 54 percent decline from the 4.25 million bushels produced in 2018. It’s 71 percent lower than the 6.85 million bushels of soybeans grown in Texas in 2017.

Yields are forecast to average 29 bushels an acre. That’s down from 31.5 bushels per acre in 2018.

Harvested acreage is forecast at 68,000 acres, which is 50 percent lower than last year.

Rice

The flooding brought on by Tropical Storm Imelda in September will likely lead to a reduction in Texas rice production this year.

The storm impacted many growers’ ratoon, or second, crop.

Production is now forecast at 11.7 million hundredweight. That’s down 22 percent from the 15.1 million hundredweight realized in 2018. It’s up slightly from 2017.

Yields are forecast to average 7,600 pounds per acre.

That’s down 370 pounds from last year.

Harvested acreage is forecast down 19 percent from last year at 154,000 acres.

Citrus

Texas growers are forecast to produce fewer grapefruits and more oranges in the 2019-2020 season.

Grapefruit production is forecast at 5.7 million boxes. If realized, that’s down seven percent from the 6.1 million boxes produced in Texas last year.

All orange production in Texas is estimated at 2.7 million boxes, which is up eight percent from the 2.5 million boxes produced last year.

Ongoing harvest

Harvest continues for crops like corn, grain sorghum, cotton and peanuts across parts of Texas.

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