From Georgia to South Carolina, Iowa to Oregon, several corn growers achieved their highest yields this harvest, earning national recognition from the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA).
A record five entries surpassed the 400-plus bushel per acre mark in the 52nd annual National Corn Yield Contest. The contest received 7,972 entries this year. Growers credited improved seed varieties, advanced production techniques, and innovative growing practices for a successful 2016 harvest.
“The contest provides farmers more than just an opportunity for friendly competition; it generates data that impacts future production practices across the industry,” said Brent Hostetler, chair of NCGA’s Stewardship Action Team. “The techniques first developed by contest winners grow into far-reaching advances, helping farmers across the country excel in a variety of situations. Our contest emphasizes innovation both from growers and technology providers, thus enabling us to meet the growing demand for food, feed, fuel, and fiber.”
The 18 winners in six production categories had verified yields averaging more than 375 bushels per acre, compared to the projected national average of 175.3 bushels per acre in 2016. While there is no overall contest winner, yields from first, second, and third place farmers over all production categories topped out at 521.3968.
“So many corn farmers initially join the National Corn Growers Association for the chance to participate in the National Corn Yield Contest,” said Paul Taylor, chair of NCGA’s Engaging Members Committee. “Yet, as they become more familiar with the breadth of activities NCGA carries out on the behalf of farmers, these members become increasingly involved and supportive. Just as the contest promotes the on-farm techniques developed by many single growers to benefit all corn farmers, NCGA’s grassroots efforts join the single voices of members together to create positive change and real opportunities for our industry.”
Winners receive national recognition in publications such as the NCYC Corn Yield Guide, as well as cash trips or other awards from participating sponsoring seed, chemical, and crop protection companies. In New Orleans, during the 2017 Commodity Classic, winners will be honored during the NCGA Awards Banquet and the NCYC State Winners Breakfast.
For the complete list of National and State winners, check out the National Corn Growers Association website.