Ag stats: 2021 Colorado crop production highlights

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Published Saturday, January 15, 2022

The 2021 corn for grain crop is estimated at 148.35 million bushels, 21 percent above last year's production of 122.96 million bushels, according to the December 1 Agricultural Survey conducted by the Mountain Regional Field Office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA. The average yield of 129.0 bushels per acre is 13.0 bushels per acre above the yield realized last year. Area harvested for grain in 2021, at 1.15 million acres, is 90,000 acres above last year. Acreage cut for corn silage is estimated at 180,000 acres, down 50,000 acres from last year, with production estimated at 4.41 million tons, compared with 5.29 million tons produced last year. 

Sorghum for grain production is estimated at 14.80 million bushels, up 190 percent from the previous year. Average yield is estimated at 37.0 bushels per acre, up 17.0 bushels per acre from last year. Producers harvested 400,000 acres for grain, up 145,000 acres from last year's area harvested. Acreage cut for sorghum silage is estimated at 39,000 acres, up 16,000 acres from last year, with production estimated at 546,000 tons, compared with 253,000 tons produced last year. 

Colorado's barley seeded area, at 52,000 acres, is down 4,000 acres from last year and the lowest seeded acreage since 2006. Harvested area, at 47,000 acres, is unchanged from 2020 and the lowest harvested acreage since 2006. Barley yield, at 111.0 bushels per acre, is down 34.0 bushels per acre from last year and is the lowest yield since 109.0 bushels per acre in 2003. Barley production in 2021 is estimated at 5.22 million bushels, down 23 percent from the previous year and the lowest production since 2006. 

Winter wheat production in Colorado, estimated at 69.56 million bushels, is up 69 percent from 2020. Winter wheat producers seeded 2.20 million acres in the fall of 2020 for harvest in 2021, up from 1.90 million acres seeded for the previous year's crop. Acreage harvested for grain increased 360,000 acres from last year to 1.88 million acres in 2021. Winter wheat yield, at 37.0 bushels per acre, is up 10.0 bushels per acre from last year. 

Proso millet production in the state is estimated at 9.24 million bushels, up from 4.86 million bushels produced last year. Farmers harvested 420,000 acres of proso millet, up 85,000 acres from the previous year. Yield increased 7.5 bushels per acre from last year to 22.0 bushels per acre. 

All hay production for 2021 is estimated at 4.49 million tons, up 36 percent from the 2020 total. Alfalfa hay production is estimated at 3.12 million tons from 780,000 acres harvested, up 740,000 tons from 2020. Average yield for the 2021 crop is 4.00 tons per acre, 0.60 ton per acre above last year. All other hay production totaled 1.37 million tons from 700,000 acres harvested, up 447,000 tons from 2020. The average yield of 1.95 tons per acre is 0.60 ton per acre above last year. New seedings of alfalfa and alfalfa mixtures in Colorado are estimated at 50,000 acres, down 33 percent from 2020. 

As of December 1, producers in Colorado were storing 2.00 million tons of all hay, up 18 percent from the 1.70 million tons stored last year. 

All sunflower production is estimated at 47.20 million pounds from 50,500 acres harvested. Yield is estimated at 935 pounds per acre, down from the 941 pounds attained last year. Production of oil varieties increased 37 percent from the previous year to 36.27 million pounds and production of non-oil varieties decreased 44 percent from the previous year to 10.93 million pounds. 

The state's sugarbeet crop of 795,000 tons for 2021 is up 7 percent from the 742,000 tons produced in 2020. Producers harvested 23,600 acres in 2021, down from 23,700 acres in 2020. Average yield is estimated at 33.7 tons per acre, 2.4 tons per acre above 2020. 

Colorado potato growers produced an estimated 20.88 million hundredweight of potatoes this year, down 8 percent from last year's crop. Average yield, at 400 hundredweight per acre, decreased 20 hundredweight per acre from the yield attained last year. The harvested area, estimated at 52,200 acres, is down from the 53,800 acres harvested last year. 

Dry edible bean production is set at 602,000 hundredweight, 44 percent below the 2020 crop of 1.07 million hundredweight. Average yield is estimated at 1,880 pounds per acre, 190 pounds per acre below last year. Harvested area, at 32,000 acres, is 20,000 acres less than last year. Pinto bean production in 2021 is 357,000 hundredweight, down 51 percent from last year. 

Winter wheat seedings last fall for the 2022 crop year are estimated at 2.15 million acres, down 2 percent from last year. may earn an affiliate commission if you purchase products or services through links in an article. Prices, when displayed, are accurate at the time of publication but may change over time. Commissions do not influence editorial independence.

The Kiowa County Press is an independent newspaper published in Eads, Kiowa County, Colorado, and to the world at

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