The National Agriculture Statistics Service released its annual “Prospective Plantings” report in late March, and as expected, peanut acreage is being reported as significantly lower. That is, if producers plant according to their reported figures.
Overall, growers intend to plant 1.12 million acres of peanuts in 2009, down 27 percent from the previous year. Record production in 2008, and concerns about future demand as a result of the Salmonella outbreak have limited the number of contracts being offered to producers for the upcoming season.
Growers in the Southeastern states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and South Carolina intend to plant 855,000 acres in 2009, compared with 1.13 million acres planted in 2008. In Georgia, planted acreage is expected to decline 28 percent from last year.
Growers in the Southwest (New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas) intend to plant 182,000 acres, down 36 percent from the previous year.
Plantings in Virginia and North Carolina are expected to total 87,000 acres, down 29 percent from 2008. Acreage in Virginia is expected to decline 50 percent from 2008.
Soybeans Up, Corn Down
For soybeans, producers intend to plant 76 million acres, and, if realized, this would be the largest planted area on record, just ahead of the 75.5 million acres planted last year. According to NASS, tightening soybean supplies and lower input costs than corn are reasons producers indicate intentions to plant more soybeans this year.
For corn, growers intend to plant 85 million acres, down one percent from last year and down nine percent from 2007. NASS says, that while lower corn prices and unstable input costs may have slowed corn planting somewhat, this would still be the third-largest acreage since 1949, behind 2007 and 2008.
Wheat And Cotton Down
Cotton producers are again expected to decrease acreage to 8.8 million acres – the smallest area since 1983. Area planted to all cotton for 2009 will be down seven percent from 2008 because of lower prices and increased input costs.
In specific regions, upland growers in the Delta states of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee intend to plant 1.67 million acres, an 11 percent decrease from the previous year.
In the Southeastern states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, producers intend to plant 1.87 million acres, a decrease of 3 percent from last year. North Carolina shows the largest decline at 13 percent less than 2008. However, in South Carolina and Virginia, producers intend to plant more cotton than last year as they shift acreage from peanuts to cotton.
Upland cotton producers in Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas intend to plant 4.93 million acres, a 6 percent decrease from last year.
Upland planted acreage in Arizona and California is expected to be down 20 percent from last year, and producers of American-Pima intend to decrease 18 percent from 2008.
Nationwide, NASS expects the total area planted to principal crops to decline by 2.4 percent from last year.