RICHMOND, Va. — As of October 1, the majority of the state was in moderate drought conditions,” said Herman Ellison, Virginia State Statistician. “There are reports that the drought condition has stressed the crops and soil moisture has taken a severe hit. By the end of September, the progress of harvesting the crops were well ahead of normal due to the dry field conditions.”
Corn production in Virginia was forecast at 55.5 million bushels, up 17 percent from the previous crop. Yield was estimated at 148.0 bushels per acre, up 2.0 bushels from the 2018 level. Acres for harvest as grain were estimated at 375,000 acres, up 50,000 acres from 2018. The U.S. corn production was forecast at 13.8 billion bushels, down 4 percent from 2018. Based on conditions as of October 1, yields are expected to average 168.4 bushels per acre, down 8.0 bushels from 2018. Area harvested for grain is forecast at 81.8 million acres, down slightly from the September forecast but up from 2018.
Soybean production for Virginia is forecast at 21.3 million bushels, decreased 14 percent from 2018. Yield was estimated at 38.0 bushels per acre, down 4.0 bushels from a year ago. U.S. soybean production was forecast at 3.55 billion bushels, down 20 percent from last year. Based on October 1 conditions, yields are expected to average 46.9 bushels per acre, down 3.7 bushels from last year. Area for harvest is forecast at 75.6 million acres, down slightly from September and down 14 percent from 2018.
Virginia cotton production is projected to be 220,000 bales, up 22 percent from last year. Cotton yields are forecast to average 1,015 pounds per acre, up 119 pounds per acre from the previous year. Producers expect to harvest 104,000 acres, up 7,000 acres from 2018. U.S. cotton production was forecast at 21.7 million bales, up 18 percent from 2018. Yields are forecast to average 833 pounds per acre, down 31 pounds from last year. Harvested acreage is estimated at 12.5 million acres, up 23 percent from the previous year.
Peanut farmers in Virginia anticipate harvesting 103 million pounds for 2019, up 2 percent from last year. Acres expected to be harvested total 25,000 acres, up 1,000 from last year. Producers expect a yield of 4,100 pounds per acre, down 100 pounds from 2018.
Virginia flue-cured tobacco production was forecast at 30.0 million pounds, down 29 percent from 2018. Yield was projected at 2,000 pounds per acre, unchanged pounds from the 2018 crop. Harvested acreage was estimated at 15,000 acres, down 6,000 acres from last year’s crop. U.S. flue-cured production was forecast at 274 million pounds, down 19 percent from last year. Flue-cured growers plan to harvest 150,000 acres, down 24 percent from 2018. Yields were expected to average 1,827 pounds per acre, up 115 pounds from last year.
Production of Virginia dark fire-cured tobacco was forecast at 672,000 pounds, up 23 percent from the previous year. Burley tobacco production was forecast at 1.26 million pounds, down 16 percent from last year.
Alfalfa hay production is forecast at 135,000 tons, 13 percent above the 2018 level. Other hay production was estimated at 2.42 million tons, unchanged from last year.
Survey responses for this report were collected around October 1. “I want to thank the producers for taking time to provide data for this report,” Ellison said.
–Herman Ellison, USDA, NASS