June 13, 2006


Costs for corn production up while yields are down in US Corn Belt state



A recent University of Illinois Extension study revealed that costs of corn and soy production had increased in Illinois, one of the major Corn Belt states in the US.


The survey was prepared with data from the Illinois Farm Business Farm Management (FBFM) Association, with input from 6,000 farmers.


Total costs to produce corn for all combined areas of the state were US$458 an acre in 2005, an 8 percent increase over the year before, said Dale Lattz, the university's farm financial management specialist.


Total cost an acre to produce soy increased from US$333 in 2004 to US$351 in 2005.


Factors that increased costs for corn production, such as fertiliser, seeds, pesticides, and fuel, also drove soy production costs.


Costs per bushel of corn in 2005 were an average of about US$0.77 higher for all the parts of the state compared with 2004.


Production costs a bushel of soy also jumped in all areas of the state compared to 2004.


At the same time, corn yield was down an average of 35 bushels an acre while soy yields only fell one to three bushels from its record of 54 bushels an acre in 2004.


Corn yield was the lowest since 2002, while total costs per acre were the highest on record, Lattz said.