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South Dakota

2015 US Corn Belt Crop Tour - South Dakota State Video
2015 US Corn Belt Crop Tour - South Dakota Photo Gallery
About South Dakota
  • Corn: 5.2 million acres, down 10% from 2014
  • Soybeans: 5.15 million acres, unchanged from 2014
  • Winter Wheat: 1.42 million acres, up 17% from 2014
  • Spring Wheat: 1.3 million acres, unchanged from 2014
  • Durum: 5,000 acres, up 25% from 2014
  • Total farmland is 44 million acres
  • In 2014 – Average Corn yield 148 up from 137 in 2013
  • In 2014 – Average wheat yield 55.5 up from 42.2 in 2013
  • In 2014 – Average Soy yield was 45 up from 40.5 in 2013
  • The average size of a farm or ranch is 1,395 acres
  • The ag industry has a $21.4 billion economic impact each year
  • 98% of farms and ranches are family owned and operated
  • Production ag and value-added industries employ 122,000 South Dakotans
  • More than 2,500 farms and ranches have been in the same family for more than 100 years
South Dakota Precipitation Map
South Dakota Farmer Interviews

Russell Buchanan - Irene, South Dakota


Darren Hefty - Valtic, South Dakota

South Dakota State Summary Video Transcript

It’s day 7 – we’re starting our U.S. Crop Tour in South Dakota. We’re in Yankton County and we’ve got a corn field here behind me, and in the background you can see we’re missing another one of those rain storms - looks like it’s going south. South Dakota is ranked number 7 in corn production. They produce about 4 million acres and the average size is 14,000 acres. Soybeans rank 8th 4 million acres. Wheat ranks 6th at 3 million acres. If you’ve noticed wheat has rallied here in the last 7 days up $1.29 - that’s up 26%. That’s probably unsustainable performance going forward. In terms of crop conditions, corn over the last three weeks very poor to poor is up about 1% to 5%; good to excellent is actually up 2% to 72%, so the corn looks really good here in South Dakota. Soybeans, we’re at 3% very poor to poor. That’s up 1% in three weeks. Good to excellent up 2% to 70%. Overall, looks lush and green, looks similar to what we just saw here in Nebraska. Wheat’s the problem spot. The soft red winter wheat is at 46% very poor to poor. That’s up 9% in three weeks. Good to excellent is at 29%, up 2. Spring wheat 8% very poor to poor. Good to excellent – 59%, up 6. So, they’ve been getting moisture. Some spots have been drowned out, but overall we’re not seeing the issues we saw in some of the other states. It’s been cool today, it’s a cool day. They’ve been getting some heat, but local farmers suggesting it’s a little too cool at night. We’re going to continue moving forward. We’re going to go toward Beresford, South Dakota. We’ll keep you posted.

We’re four miles North of Beresford. We’re in South Dakota, it’s day 7, July 2nd, and we’re standing in front of a corn field that’s chest high, and if anybody remembers from last year, we were in this same area and this whole field - plus there’s a bean field across the road and down there - was all drowned out because of too much moisture and too much rain. In fact, do you remember some of those days where this area was getting 8 inches of rain in one day, and what a difference a year makes. It’s looking really good, lush and green. Looks like the farmers here have gotten a little lucky this year compared to some of the other areas. As you go toward Sioux Falls, Omaha, it looks like they’ve gotten too much moisture like some of the other states – Indiana, Illinois. They’ve been able to side dress, they’ve been able to get into the fields and spray, so looking pretty good compared to last year in South Dakota.

We’re in Beresford, South Dakota. We’re in a corn field. Looks like the sun’s trying to come out. South Dakota has been fairly lucky this year compared to last year. There was just too much moisture, flooding it in fact, over the period of a 24 hour day. This year they’ve gotten enough moisture. It’s been a good balance between the heat and the moisture – probably could use some more heat. This was planted late April and it’s more than chest high, so it’s on the verge of being an above average crop here in South Dakota.

We’re travelling northwest on highway 34. We’re near Colman, South Dakota, its day 7 and folks, it was looking good coming up here but we’re starting to find some more moisture issues, damage. You can see in the background there, drowned out areas. There’s another corn field across the road that still has some standing water. It’s cool today again we need the heat to get this moisture evaporated, but it’s doing some more damage here in South Dakota, on both the bean and the corn crops.

We’re travelling west on highway 41. We’re near Wolsey, South Dakota and as we’ve travelled west and further north, going toward Aberdeen, South Dakota, we’ve noticed some moisture stress taking a toll on both corn and beans. Not so much the corn, although the corn doesn’t look as – it’s maybe waist high. The beans are just planted, getting out of the ground. There’s some waterlogged fields in the background there so this central to northern South Dakota seems like they got a little bit too much moisture here recently. We’re travelling on highway 281, we’re travelling north toward Aberdeen, in South Dakota. We’re in front of a wheat field and wheat fields are looking pretty good across the United States, but they look deceiving from what I’ve been told from local elevators and farmers that are harvesting, that the test weights not there, the proteins not there, the yields are lower and we’ve got vomotoxin because of too much moisture this year and so that’s why Chicago is starting to create a premium over Kansas. There really isn’t a lot of quality wheat being harvested in the U.S., and you’re not seeing it in the USDA report so that’s why wheat has rallied $1.29 in 7 days.

We’re travelling North on 281, we’re near Warner, South Dakota. We’ve got some corn here that’s about waist high. About where it is in this region – it’s about waist high. So we’re going to conclude our tour of South Dakota. It’s day 7, July 2nd and if I was to rate this state in terms of average or above average. I think the very south, where last year they got a lot of rain, this year a huge difference. We’ve got corn higher than myself so I’m going to give an average to above average to the very south. But if you travel central and get into the northern regions of South Dakota, I’m thinking it’s average to below average. We’re seeing a lot of moisture stress again like we saw in Indiana, and Illinois and Ohio. Beans in most cases are at the two leaf stage although there are some that are higher than that, but we’ve gone through 7 states. I’m going to rank South Dakota maybe number 4 in terms of the 7. It’s not a big state in terms of the corn and soybean producing, but nonetheless it’s not going to necessarily help the national average

2015 US Corn Belt Tour