Based on Aug. 1 conditions, corn production in Colorado is forecast at 142.78 million bushels, according to the Aug. 1 crop yield survey conducted by the National Agricultural Statistics Service’s Mountain Regional Field Office, USDA. This forecast is down 4% from last year’s 148.35 million bushels. The 1.21 million acres expected to be harvested for grain this year is unchanged from the June estimate and up 60,000 acres from acres harvested a year ago. Average yield is expected to decrease by 11.0 bushels per acre from last year to 118.0 bushels per acre. As of July 31, Colorado’s corn crop condition was rated 7% very poor, 17% poor, 53% fair, 18% good, and 5% excellent. Corn silk formation was 51% complete, compared to 81% last year and the 5-year average of 74%.
Sorghum production in 2022 is forecast at 12.32 million bushels, down 17% from the 14.80 million bushels harvested a year earlier. Growers expect to harvest 385,000 acres this year, down from 400,000 acres harvested last year. Average yield is forecast at 32.0 bushels per acre, 5.0 bushels per acre less than last year’s final yield. As of July 31, sorghum crop condition was rated as 5% poor, 64% fair, 26% good and 5% excellent. Headed sorghum was 27 percent complete, compared to 43 percent last year and the 5-year average of 34 percent.
Barley production is forecast at 7.62 million bushels, down 7% from the July 1 forecast, but up 46% from last year’s crop. The area to be harvested in 2022, at 60,000 acres, is up 13,000 acres from the 47,000 acres harvested last year. Barley yield is forecast at 127.0 bushels per acre, down 10.0 bushels per acre from the July 1 forecast, but down 16.0 bushels per acre from last year. As of July 31, the condition of the barley crop was rated 5% very poor, 5% poor, 24% fair, 43% good and 23% excellent. Barley coloring was 59% complete, compared to 69% last year and the 5-year average of 77%.
Winter wheat production is forecast at 42.90 million bushels, down 4% from the July 1 forecast and 38% from the 69.56 million bushels produced last year. Harvested area is expected to total 1.65 million acres, down 230,000 acres from the 1.88 million acres harvested in 2021. As of August 1, the average yield is forecast at 26.0 bushels per acre, down 1.0 bushels per acre from the July 1 forecast and 11.0 bushels per acre lower than last year’s final yield.
Colorado farmers and ranchers expect to harvest 690,000 acres of alfalfa hay this year, down 90,000 acres from 2021. They also expect to harvest 650,000 acres of other hay in 2021, down 50,000 acres over last year. Alfalfa production is forecast at 2.00 million tonnes, down 36% from the 3.12 million tonnes produced in 2021. Other hay production is forecast at 1.11 million tonnes, down 19% compared to the 1.37 million tonnes produced a year ago. Yields are expected to average 2.90 tonnes per acre for alfalfa hay and 1.70 tonnes per acre for other hay, compared to last year’s yields of 4.00 tonnes per acre for alfalfa and 1.95 tonnes per acre for other hay.
Dry bean production for 2022 is forecast at 693,000 quintals, up 15% from the 602,000 quintals produced a year earlier. Yields are expected to average 1,980 pounds per acre, up from 1,880 pounds per acre last year. Growers expect to harvest 35,000 acres this year, up 3,000 acres from 32,000 acres last year. As of July 31, 50% of the dry bean crop was in bloom, compared to 72% last year and the five-year average of 62%. The dry bean harvest was rated at 3% very poor, 16% poor, 30% fair, 31% good and 20% excellent.
Sugar beet production is forecast at 663,000 tonnes, down 17% from the 795,000 tonnes produced in 2021. Growers expect to harvest 22,400 acres this year, down from 23,600 acres a year ago . Yields are expected to average 29.6 tonnes per acre, up from 33.7 tonnes per acre a year ago. As of July 31, the sugar beet harvest was rated as 50% good and 50% good.
Colorado peach production for 2022 is forecast at 12,500 tons, up 9% from last year’s production of 11,500 tons.