Ag News

Big gains forecast for Georgia peach, cotton crops

Georgia’s peach and cotton crops are expected to make big production gains in 2018, according to the August Crop Production Report from the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).

The state’s peach production is forecast for a rebound from 2017, when a late freeze decimated peach production, which was limited to 10,000 tons. With more favorable weather in 2018, Georgia’s commercial peach growers are forecast to produce 25,000 tons, an increase of 150 percent.

Georgia cotton growers increased acreage from 1.28 million in 2017 to 1.45 million in 2018. Combined with an expected yield increase, Georgia cotton production is forecast at 2.9 million bales in 2018, which would represent an increase of 675,000 bales (30 percent) over 2017 production.

The state’s peanut growers trimmed planted acreage in 2018 by 135,000 acres. Even with a slight yield increase anticipated, NASS predicted Georgia’s peanut production would decline by more than 508 million pounds, from 3.6 billion pounds in 2017 to 3.1 billion pounds in 2018, a decline of 14 percent.

The state’s corn, hay and soybean growers are all expected to increase production in 2018.

Georgia corn growers are expected to produce 52.8 million bushels in 2018, up 9.6 million bushels from 2017, an increase of 22 percent.

Hay production in Georgia is forecast at 1.86 million pounds in 2018, up 3.2 percent from 2017.

Soybean production in Georgia is forecast at 7.2 million bushels in 2018, up 14.6 percent form 2017.

NASS forecast Georgia tobacco production at 26.25 million pounds in 2018, which would equal 2017 production.