By Tom Collins
There are now three groups predicting record corn and soybean yields in Ontario.
And some Ontario farmers agree. Dan Haydon, who farms just north of Goderich in Huron County, spent about an hour on Sept. 29 harvesting soybeans before the rain hit. Two days later, he still wasn’t back in the field, but said there’s a good chance this year’s crop will be a record.
“I’m thinking we have just as good a crop as we’ve ever had,” he said. His bushel-per-acre average is in the mid-50s, and Haydon expected to hit at least 60 bushels per acre this year. “You could see in July there was potential because there were a lot of flowers on the plants. And all the older guys around me were saying it’s the August rains that make beans. It rained a lot throughout August, so those older guys were right.”
Maizex Seeds was the first to predict record-breaking yields for Ontario’s top crops. Maizex projects 50.2 bushels per acre of soybeans and 179.5 bu/ac for corn. Great Lakes Grain, Southwestern Ontario grain marketers, was even more optimistic, predicting Ontario will yield on average 54 bu/ac for soybeans and 183 bu/ac for corn.
Both predictions would smash the previous records of 48.3 bu/ac for soybeans and 169 bu/ac for corn.
Even Statistics Canada got in on the fun as its model-based principal field crop estimates record-breaking soybean yields at 49.1 bu/ac and corn at 169.3 bu/ac.
Maizex says Huron County will have the top soybean yield in Western Ontario at 56 bu/ac, but Perth County is forecast to be at 55 bu/ac and Lambton, Essex, Kent and Brant Counties are expected to get 54 bu/ac. Great Lakes Grain’s highest projected county is Kent County at 58.6 bu/ac.
Stan Brien at Ridgetown said the start of harvest was delayed in his area due to rain, but the beans “look exceptionally good. Maybe the best in my lifetime.”
Richard Paten at Iona Station in Elgin County said farmers in his area can expect average yields.
“I’d be happily surprised if it was a record,” he said.
Kyle Straatman in Lambton County was a week away from harvest as of Oct. 1 due to wet weather but he was still expecting one of his best yields ever.
Maizex forecasts Kent County will have Ontario’s top corn yield at 204 bu/ac. Great Lakes Grain forecasts Huron County to have Ontario’s top corn yield at 198.8 bu/ac.