February 1, 2016
Indiana popcorn production down in 2015
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Popcorn production in Indiana fell by 29 percent last year because of less demand following bounty crops the two previous years and from frequent rains that flooded some fields.
A new report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture shows that growers produced 3.1 million hundredweight of popcorn, equal to 310 million pounds.
"Prolific popcorn production in 2013 and 2014 in Indiana led to a reduction in production in 2015," said Greg Matli, state statistician for the Indiana field office of the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service.
Growers in 2014, in particular, produced a record crop of popcorn on a record amount of harvested acres - 4.32 million hundredweight from 90,000 acres. They produced 3.7 million hundredweight in 2013.
With so much popcorn on the market from the nation's second-leading popcorn-producing state, demand from processors fell. Consequently, fewer acres were planted last year in Indiana - 85,000, compared with 91,000 in 2014. They harvested 83,000 acres, down 7,000 acres from 2014.
The weather was a factor in the lower numbers, too. Frequent rain in the spring and part of the summer flooded fields often, killing some young corn plants, hindering development of others and decreasing yields at harvest. Popcorn plants yielded an average of 37 hundredweight per acre, compared with 48 in 2014 and 46 a year earlier.
The average price farmers received for their 2015 popcorn was $16.50 per hundredweight, down $2.40 from the previous year. The total crop value was $50.7 million, down 38 percent from $81.6 million in 2014.
Writer: Keith Robinson, 765-494-2722, firstname.lastname@example.org
Source: Greg Matli, 765-494-8371, Greg.Matli@nass.usda.gov