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Harvest progress surges into homestretch on dry weather

Agriculture.com Staff 10/29/2007 @ 2:28pm

Drying weather where it was needed most has corn and soybean harvest back on track, according to this week's USDA-NASS Crop Progress report released Monday afternoon.

As of Sunday, 73% of the country's corn crop was harvested compared to the previous five-year average of 69%. The past week's harvest progress jumped 13% on the drying trend after up to three weeks of wet weather delayed any progress leading up to last week. Harvest progress gains of around 20% were noted in Iowa, Nebraska and Minnesota, all states where rainfall totals were greatest in early- and mid-October.

The jump in soybean harvest progress in the past seven days wasn't as sharp as with corn harvest, but the average progress for this week of the year is in sight of farmers this week, according to Monday's USDA report. Eighty-four percent of the nation's soybean crop was harvested as of Sunday, compared to the previous five-year average of 85% and a nine-percent gain from last week.

Farmers are reporting quality issues as they near the end of the tunnel with soybean harvest. Agriculture Online Marketing Talk members say shattering pods are creating the biggest harvest hassle at this late point. This means lower-than-expected yields for Marketing Talk member outofthemoney.

"I would have bet $1,000 that they were better than 60 [bushels per acre], but they will end up in the lower 50s," he writes of his soybean crop. "Don't take that the wrong way, because that is a good yield but not great.

"I am losing one to two bushels per acre from shattering at the head, which doesn't help. But, i think that the August rains and some of the high winds we had with them did more harm than good."

For other crops, Monday's USDA-NASS report shows an 88% progress level with winter wheat sowings, and 70% of that already planted has emerged, both figures near the previous five-year average. Cotton harvest has passed the halfway point and is slightly ahead of average, while sorghum harvest surged to 11% ahead of normal in the past week. Peanut harvest, on the other hand, remains slower, 12% behind the average pace at 62%.

Drying weather where it was needed most has corn and soybean harvest back on track, according to this week's USDA-NASS Crop Progress report released Monday afternoon.

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