Nebraska Increasing Soybean, Dry Edible Bean and Sugarbeet Acres; Decreasing Corn

Nebraska Increasing Soybean, Dry Edible Bean and Sugarbeet Acres; Decreasing Corn

March 31, 2008 

Nebraska producers expect to increase acreage planted to soybeans, dry edible beans, and sugarbeets, decrease acreage devoted to corn, hay, oats, sunflowers and wheat (sown last fall), while leaving sorghum acreage unchanged from a yearago, according to USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service, Nebraska Field Office.

Nebraska Intentions

  • Corn growers expect to plant 8.8 million acres for all purposes in 2008, down 6% from last year but still up 9% from 2006.
  • Soybean growers intend to plant 5.0 million acres, up 32% from last year and just 1% below the record high set two years ago.
  • Last fall, winter wheat was sown on 1.95 million acres, down 5% from a year earlier but 8% higher than the 2006 crop.
  • Sorghum growers expect to plant 350,000 acres, unchanged from last year.
  • Dry edible bean producers intend to plant 125,000 acres, up 14% from 2007.
  • Sugarbeet plantings of 52,000 acres would be up 9% from a year ago.
  • Sunflower plantingintentions, at 45,000 acres, are down 8% from last year and the lowest since 1992.
  • Hay acreage for harvest, at 2.5 million, would be down 6% from last year and thelowest since the series began in 1909. Oat planting intentions, at 100,000 acres, are down 17% from 2007 and the lowest in over 100 years.

These acreage estimates are based on surveys conducted the first two weeks of March.This report is intended to assist growers in finalizing their acreage plans for 2008. Actual areaplanted may vary from that indicated due to farmer's final assessment of planting options, effectsof weather, availability of production inputs, and changes in price expectations for the comingcrop year.

National Intentions

U.S. corn growers intend to plant 86.0 million acres of corn for all purposes in 2008, down 8% from last year when corn planted area was the highest since 1944. Expected acreage is down from last year in most states as favorable prices for other crops, high input costs for corn, and crop rotation considerations are motivating some farmers to plant fewer acres to corn. Despite the decrease, corn acreage is expected to remain at historically high levels as the corn price outlook remains strong due in part to the continued expansion in ethanol production.

Soybean producers intend to plant 74.8 million acres in 2008, up 18% from last year, but 1% below the record high acreage in 2006. Acreage increases are expected in all states, except in West Virginia, which is unchanged from last year. The largest increases are expected in Iowa and Nebraska, up 1.25 million acres and 1.20 million acres from 2007, respectively. Increases of at least 800,000 acres are also expected in Indiana, Minnesota, and South Dakota. If realized, the planted acreage in Kansas, New York, and Pennsylvania will be the largest on record.

Acreage for all wheat is estimated at 63.8 million acres, up 6% from 2007. The 2008 winter wheat planted area, at 46.8 million acres, is 4% above last year and up slightly from the previous estimate. Of this total, about 32.5 million acres are hard red winter wheat, 10.7 million acres are soft red winter wheat, and 3.63 million acres are white winter wheat. Area planted to other spring wheat for 2008 is expected to total 14.3 million acres, up 8% from 2007. Of this total, about 13.6 million acres are hard red spring wheat. The intended Durum planted area for 2008 is 2.63 million acres, up 22% from the previous year.