Corn, soybean harvests beat average pace

by Ron Sterk
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WASHINGTON – Corn harvest in the 18 major states was 73% completed and the soybean crop was 86% combined by Nov. 3, just ahead of the 2008-12 averages of 71% and 85%, respectively, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in its weekly Crop Progress report Monday.  

In the top two producing states for both crops, corn was 95% harvested in Iowa (91% as the average) and 92% in Illinois (85% as average), while soybeans were 83% combined in Illinois (76% as average) and 75% in Iowa (71% as average) as of Nov. 3.

The winter wheat crop was 91% seeded in the top 18 states, just ahead of 90% as the five-year average for the date. The crop was 78% emerged, ahead of 73% as the average, the U.S.D.A. said. Planting was completed as of Nov. 3 in Colorado, Idaho, Nebraska and South Dakota.

The condition of the winter wheat crop improved, reflecting beneficial rainfall across much of the growing area last week. The crop was rated 63% good to excellent, up from 61% a week earlier and far better than 39% at the same time last year. Winter wheat was rated 31% fair (35% a week earlier and 42% a year ago) and 6% poor to very poor (4% the prior week and 19% last year).

Grain sorghum was 75% harvested in the 11 major states, up from 69% as the five-year average, the U.S.D.A. said. Rice harvest was nearly completed as of Nov. 3 at 98%, above the 95% average. Peanut harvest was 84% completed (78% average) and sugar beets were 93% harvested (90% average).

The only harvests lagging the average pace were cotton at 43% (54% as average) and sunflowers at 32% (61% as average for the date).
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