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2016 Corn Belt Crop Tour: Iowa

Tenth state in a 12-state tour

By Andrea Gal
Managing Editor, Integrated Media

The Risk Management team has completed a three-day Iowa segment on its fifth annual U.S. Corn Belt Crop Tour.

Moe Agostino, Risk Management chief commodity strategist, explained that Iowa corn acres were up slightly (three per cent) over 2015 acres. Soybean acres, in contrast, were down by two per cent. Notably, the number of wheat acres jumped by 25 per cent.

Some farmers and market reports had suggested the “lower end of Des Moines” was really dry, with reports, according to Agostino, of “cracks in the soil that were perhaps larger than (those in) 2012.” Agostino explained, however, that area farmers had received “about an inch and a half (of rain) here in the last week or so.”

Similarly, producer Lance Knobloch of Alvord, Iowa, said “we’re sitting good” in terms of rainfall. He noted the area “could use some (rain) now again.”

Knobloch explained the crops seem “on par with last year – if we don’t have an early frost.” (In 2015, his average yields were about 220 bushels/acre for corn and 74 bushels/acre for beans.)

While the corn was a week or two away from tasseling near Boyden, Iowa, Agostino noted that there was “a lot of tasseled corn” in the state. Some of the soybeans near Grand Mound, Iowa were “almost waist high.”

Agostino said “Iowa is the only state I am going to give a ‘wow’ to … from the farmers we have talked to it looks like this crop could be even better than 2015.”  He gave the corn and soybeans a 9 out of 10.

Be sure to check back daily as more videos from the tour are posted. The next stop on the tour is Wisconsin.

Use the hashtag #cornbelt16 to follow the tour on social media.

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