This week, the National Corn Growers Association continued its ninth season of Field Notes, a series that takes readers behind the farm gate to follow the year in the life of American farm families. While these growers come from diverse geographic areas and run unique operations, they share a common love for U.S. agriculture and the basic values that underpin life in farming communities.
Field Notes caught up with Jim Raben, who farms in southern Illinois, this week. Given planting conditions and the weather throughout the summer and fall, he had worried about yields. Now that the crop is largely in the bins, he found some surprising results.
“Even though we did have a lot of bad spots, the yields were better than we anticipated,” said Raben. “It probably isn’t anything great in our area. It is an average crop or, maybe, just a little below, but it is still better than what we had anticipated.
“The quality is probably equal to if not better than last year. The quality is fantastic. We’re running a 61 lb./bu. test weight, and 90 percent of the crop was in the 14 to 15 percent moisture range when we picked it.”
To listen to the full interview, click here.
Stay tuned over the coming weeks as Field Notes follows the growers who have opened their farms, families and communities up this year and meet the true faces of modern American agriculture.