Why North Dakota Farmers Plant Corn & Soybeans

Why North Dakota Farmers Plant Corn & Soybeans
Mark Formo, Farmer - Litchville, North Dakota Jim Howe, Farmer - Casselton, North Dakota

The Dakota’s have been opting for a changing crop rotation over the last decade and half. Todd Gleason reports farmers there have been searching out the best alternatives.

Mark Formo is from Litchville…
1:58 radio
2:10 radio self-contained

Mark Formo is from Litchville. That’s about 85 miles west of Fargo. He used to plant sun flowers. He doesn’t anymore because the blackbirds, you heard me right, blackbirds were eating up his profits.

Formo :19 …anything from an 82 to a 95 day corn.

Quote Summary - We lost hundreds of pounds per acre to blackbirds and we just needed something else to do. That and we know that corn varieties, and genetics are phenomenal for corn. We try to raise anything from an 82 to a 95 day corn.

Those are really short season varieties by comparison to the 110 day corn farmers in the I states use, Illinois, Indiana, and Iowa. Formo says of the seven-point-two million acres of soybeans he and his fellow North Dakotan’s planted this year, “We needed something to rotate with corn.”

Jim Howe, a Cassleton, North Dakota farmer agrees. He, unlike Formo, lives in the Red River Valley. This year Howe says his crops are still in pretty good shape. That certainly is not the case for the rest of the state.

Howe :39 …for additional rain for the soybeans, corn, and sugarbeets.

Quote Summary - Well our western part of the state, and I feel sorrow for those farmers, is suffering from a severe drought. We in the eastern part of North Dakota in the Red River Valley are probably going to get an average crop to versus a sever drought. We’ve been affected by the drought. Our yield goals have been cut a little bit as far as the to end, but we are fortunate and very lucky. Certainly the small grains are made now. We are still awaiting for additional rain for the soybeans, corn, and sugarbeets.

This year farmers in North Dakota have planted enough acres to soybeans, some 1.1 million more than last year, to become the United States fourth largest producer of the oilseed by acreage.