After posting near record high numbers ever in 2012, the market value of Wisconsin's major crops such as corn and soybeans dropped in 2013 as a result of significant price declines.
For all of the crops covered in a recent report by the Wisconsin field office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, the market value fell by 18 percent in total. The report indicated a market value of slightly more than $3.783 billion compared to just over $4.636 billion in 2012 and the record high of nearly $5 billion in 2011.
The difference in the value of the state's corn crop accounted for all but about $100 million of the dollar downturn from 2012 to 2013. Because the average per bushel market price fell from $6.69 in 2012 to $4.20 in 2013, the total value of the year's corn crop was a bit over $1.870 billion compared to more than $2.671 billion in 2012 -- a decrease of 30 percent despite a 12-percent increase in corn production.
With soybeans, the market value of the 2013 production fell by 27 percent compared to 2012 but this was due to a combination of both lower prices and less production. Soybean production fell from 70.55 million bushels in 2012 to 58.9 million in 2013 and the average market price slipped from $14 to $12.30 per bushel, putting the value of the 2013 crop at $724.47 million after the $987.7 million value in 2012.
Several other of the state's major agricultural crops fared better in overall value in 2013 compared to 2012. The value of all forages rose to more than $1.375 billion from the just over $1.196 billion in 2012. That trend was also consistent for the alfalfa, all hay, and other hay data in the report as the per ton average prices were nearly $20 higher.
Among the grain crops, the value of barley grown in the state rose to $4.978 million in 2013 compared to $3.729 million in 2012 as a result of higher production and a 70-cent average increase in the market price to $6.35 per bushel.
The value of both winter wheat and oats fell, however. A combination of lower production and a $1.40 drop in the average per bushel price to $6.15 put the value of the 2013 winter wheat crop at $94.526 million compared to $138.731 million in 2012. Despite a 10-cent increase in the average per bushel price to $3.95, the value of the state's oats production fell by over $3 million to a total of $26.959 million in 2013.
A $2.70 per hundredweight price increase to $11.40 boosted the value of Wisconsin's 2013 potato crop to $310.992 million in 2013 compared to $256.128 million in 2012. The market value of the state's production of dry edible beans and peppermint and spearmint oil was lower across the board for 2013 compared to 2012 due to lower production.
For the United State as a whole, the value of the crops listed in the report fell just short of $167 billion in 2013 compared to slightly over $185 billion in 2012. Except for spearmint oil, the year to year changes for the individual crops were consistent with those in Wisconsin.
Growers in Wisconsin enjoyed higher average prices in 2013 compared to the country as a whole for potatoes, oats, the hay categories, barley, dry edible beans, and the mint oils. Average market prices in the state were lower for corn, soybeans, and wheat.