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USDA issues long-term crop, livestock forecast

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 11, 2013 at 6:33 pm •  Published: February 11, 2013
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Domestic production of beef isn't expected to increase much until at least 2015 because many cattle producers who have been hurt by drought and high feed costs have reduced the size of their herds.

U.S. corn production is expected to grow to 15.26 billion bushels by 2022 as better crop technology allows farmers to get more out of each acre. That would be up from last year's drought-stricken crop of 10.73 billion bushels, which was still one of the largest in U.S. history thanks to more drought-resistant corn and expanded planting. The USDA predicts U.S. farmers will control 46 percent of the export market in 2022.

The National Corn Growers Association said the predictions show the great potential of the U.S. corn crop, if everything comes together just right. And Paul Bertels, a vice president with the trade group, said the USDA predictions are in line with what corn growers expect.

"I don't think it's unrealistic," Bertels said.

The U.S. soybean crop is expected to grow to 3.6 billion bushels in 2022, up from the 3.3 billion expected this year.

The USDA predicts the U.S. wheat crop will stay about the same over the next decade, with farmers harvesting 2.08 billion bushels in 2022, down from the 2.2 billion expected this year.

The agency expects U.S. net farm income to reach a record $127.6 billion this year because of the high crop prices coming out of the drought. Even with the increased production the USDA predicts, income levels should stay relatively high, it said, with net farm income about $94.7 billion in 2022.

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Online:

USDA predictions to 2022: http://1.usa.gov/YSu6DC

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Follow Josh Funk online at www.twitter.com/funkwrite .