Corn harvest puts weak crop in early

Sept. 17, 2012 at 4:27 PM

WASHINGTON, Sept. 17 (UPI) -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture said 26 percent of the corn crop had been harvested as of the week ending Sunday.

The data points to a disappointing season with early results. Farmer reported last week that 24 percent of the corn crop was in either good or excellent shape. After a prolonged drought through the summer months, most of the crop is rated as either very poor, poor or fair with the remaining 76 percent divided evenly among the bottom three categories, 25, 25 and 26 percent, respectively.

In 2011 at this time of the year, 51 percent of the crop was considered in good or excellent shape.

But this year's crop continues to disappoint. A week ago, 22 percent of the crop was considered good or excellent. The conditions rating dropped 2 percentage points in the latest week.

In cotton fields, 6 percent of the crop is harvested, in line with historic averages. Farmers report 43 percent of the cotton crop is in good or excellent shape, putting the condition of the crop better than this time in 2011, when 27 percent was rated at good or excellent.

The soybean harvest is 10 percent completed, which is ahead of the crop's average for this time of year. Farmers report 33 percent of the crop is in good or excellent shape, a sharp drop from 2011, when 53 percent was given high ratings during this week of the year.

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