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March 30, 2007   Email to Friend 

FORECAST: STATE'S CORN ACREAGE UP 50 PERCENT
Darryal Ray
(334) 613-4187
March 30, 2007

MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- Driven by growing ethanol demand, Alabama farmers are expected to plant 50 percent more corn acreage in 2007, according to the Prospective Planting Report issued today by the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Nationwide, expected corn acreage is up in nearly all states as high corn prices are encouraging farmers to plant more acres in corn. The survey shows America's farmers intend to plant 90.5 million acres of corn for all purposes in 2007, up 15 percent from 2006 and 11 percent higher than 2005.

Herb Vanderberry, director of the NASS's Alabama Field Office, said the annual spring forecast offers a glimpse of what farmers expect to plant for 2007.

"From the drought of last year, many farmers are intending to plant more acreage to make up from their loss of last year," said Vanderberry. "Weather conditions during the growing season, cost and availability of production inputs, and market prices are all factors in determining which crops and how much acreage our diligent Alabama farmers will actually plant for 2007."

Soybeans, another of Alabama's leading row crops, are also expected to show a significant increase in planted acreage -- up 19 percent from last year to 190,000 acres -- while cotton production tumbles 22 percent from last year, down to 450,000 acres. A 3 percent drop in peanut acres is forecast at 160,000, down 5,000 acres from 2006.

Alabama's winter wheat acreage is estimated at 130,000 acres -- 30,000 more than in 2006. Hay acreage intended for harvest at 900,000 acres, is up 25 percent from last year, and up 15 percent from a five-year average. Sorghum growers are expected to plant 10,000 acres, unchanged from last year. Oats planted acres are estimated at 40,000, down 10,000 acres from last year. Sweet potato intentions are 2,500 acres, up 100 acres from last year.

The Alabama Agricultural Statistics Service will conduct the June Agriculture Survey to determine the actual acreage planted for each crop. Complete details for the Alabama forecast can be downloaded below.

For the national survey, visit www.usda.gov/nass/PUBS/TODAYRPT/pspl0307.txt.

Download 'Alabama Prospective Plantings' Here


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