The USDA’s yield forecast says Illinois should remain the top soybean producer in the U.S. this year.
The November crop update forecasts the soybean yield to match last year’s record of 56 bushels per acre.
Mark Schleusener, state statistician for the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, says Illinois was facing some tough competition from its western neighbor to be no. 1 in soybeans.
“If you were into horse races, you could look at the Iowa production of soybeans and Illinois’ production of soybeans, and you would say Illinois is ahead by a nose,” Schleusener said. “Both states are having very high yields and generally quite good crops on soybeans.”
The corn yield has moved in the opposite direction, being forecast to drop to 168 bushels per acre from last year’s record of 200. Schleusener said too much rain earlier in the year affected crops, especially on flat ground or low-lying areas, but adds that there haven’t been many years where the yield was as high as its predicted to be in 2015.