July 29, 2008


Wisconsin farmers expect good corn, soy harvest this year


The flooding that hits southern Wisconsin this summer had destroyed tens of millions of dollars worth of farm crops but farmers are still expecting to harvest more corn and soy this autumn.

The plant crop is a complete loss, said Don Baloun, farm conservationist for the USDA's Natural Resource Conservation Service in Madison. A survey in 26 counties reported that four had lost 21-40 percent of their corn crop while two had lost 21-40 percent of their soy crop.


Ron Tauchen, deputy director of USDA's Agricultural Statistics Service in Wisconsin, also said late June surveys suggest at least 70,000 acres of soy crop were lost to the floodings while the lost corn acreage was harder to determine.


However, the surveys also found that despite the floods, farmers are expecting to harvest 4.7 million acres of corn and soy this autumn, up from 4.6 million acres on-year.


More acreage has been given to grains and less to hay and pasture due to high grain prices, Tauchen said.


Jefferson County in Wisconsin lost about 51,000 acres of corn and soy out of 128,000 acres that were planted, a loss that totalled nearly US$45 million, according to Joel Bollman, the county's farm agent.


Jane Larson, spokesman for the state Department of Agriculture, said there is currently no estimation of total crop losses in Wisconsin, in part because farmers have until August to report crop losses.

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