2021 Wisconsin corn and soybean production hits record high

Colleen Kottke
Wisconsin State Farmer
It was a good growing season Wisconsin crops last year, with corn and soybean production setting record highs, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service – Crop Production 2021 Summary.

It was a good growing season Wisconsin crops last year, with corn and soybean production setting record highs, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service – Crop Production 2021 Summary. 

Corn for grain production in Wisconsin was estimated at 547 million bushels, up 8 percent from the previous year’s 507 million bushels. Wisconsin’s corn for grain yield was estimated at 180.0 bushels per acre – a record high.

Nationally, corn for grain production was estimated at 15.1 billion bushels, up 7 percent from the 2020 estimate. The aver yield in the U.S. was estimated at a record high 177.0 bushels per acre, 5.6 bushels above the 2020 yield of 171.4 bushels per acre.

Wisconsin was among 16 states that logged record yields. State corn growers harvested 3.04 million acres of corn, 110,000 acres over 2020. Corn planted for all purposes in 2021 was estimated at 4.00 million acres. 

Across the U.S., farmers planted 93.4 million acres of corn for grain, up 3 percent from the 2020 estimate. Area harvested for grain was estimated at 85.4 million acres, up 4 percent from the 2020 estimate.

Corn planted for silage production in the Badger state was estimated at 19.1 million tons, down 5 percent from 2020. The silage yield estimate of 21.5 tons per acre was up 0.5 ton per acre from 2020. Producers harvested 890,000 acres of corn for silage, down 7 percent from 2020. 

Soybeans set record

Wisconsin soybean growers helped to set a production record of 114 million bushels last year. This was up 10 percent from last year’s 103 million bushels. The Wisconsin soybean crop yielded 55 bushels per acre, up from the national yield of 51.4 bushels per acre.

National soybean production totaled a record 4.44 billion bushels, up 5 percent from 2020. Growers across the U.S. planted 87.2 million acres, up 5 percent from the 2020 planted acreage. Crop farmers harvested 86.3 million acres of soybeans, up 5 percent from 2020.

Wisconsin was among 20 states that set record high yields. State growers harvested 2.07 million acres of beans, up 80,000 acres from 2020. Soybean planted acreage, at 2.10 million, up 80,000 acres from 2020. 

Hay production

Farmers were able to harvest four crops of hay this year thanks to ideal weather. All hay production for the state was estimated at 3.52 million tons, up 1 percent from the 3.48 million tons produced in 2020.

Producers averaged 2.86 tons per acre, up 0.32 ton per acre from 2020. All hay harvested acres were estimated at 1.23 million acres, down 140,000 acres from 2020. 

Alfalfa and alfalfa mixtures for hay production was estimated at 2.91 million tons, up 8 percent from 2020. Producers averaged 3.20 tons per acre, unchanged from 2020. Harvested acres were up 70,000 from last year, to 910,000 acres.

Wisconsin producers seeded 25 percent less acreage (300,000 acres) than the previous year. 

Other hay production was estimated at 608,000 tons, down 24 percent from 2020. Producers averaged 1.90 tons per acre, up 0.40 ton from the 2020 yield. Harvested acres of other hay, at 320,000, were down 210,000 acres from 2020. 

Potato production for 2021 was estimated at 29.1 million cwt, up 1 percent from 2020. Producers averaged 425 cwt per acre, up 1 percent from the 2020 yield. Planted and harvested acres were estimated at 69,000 acres and 68,500 acres, respectively.