The 2016 peanut crop got off to one of the best starts we’ve had in the last several years. The UGA Peanut Team had high hopes that the potential of the crop would stay that way through the entire growing season; however, like always, mother nature tends to throw a curve ball and has caused some major situations to develop through the growing season- one of those being lack of rainfall. 50 percent of Georgia’s 2016 peanut crop is irrigated. If looking at just the irrigated crop, the yield potential has maintained itself through the growing season and looks pretty good. “But, the non-irrigated is what we are worried about most,” says Scott Monfort, UGA Extension peanut agronomist. Non-irrigated peanuts have gone through most of the growing season without rainfall which has severely crippled the peanut crop in some areas where they have very little yield or none at all. That’s about 20 to 30 percent at the most of the non-irrigated crop, the rest of it can go from having a light yield to a very good yield depending on how much rain they received.
Currently with the 2016 Georgia Peanut Crop, “we are still trying to find out how much of the non-irrigated crop farmers will actually harvest and part of that will be determined by how much of the non-irrigated crop has been affected by other issues like diseases and insects and how that might affect yield and quality,” Monfort states. Georgia has planted 770,000 acres of peanuts. “We are just going to have to wait as we begin this harvest to determine where we are at and what the average yields are going to be,” he adds. If you look on the National Ag Statistics website, they have Georgia listed as producing 4,600 pounds as the state average. Monfort says we are not going to make that. “We are going to be somewhere in between 3,600 and 4,100 pounds at the best for this year at the best. That has a lot of the industry worried now because we’ve had higher exports from peanuts last year and lower yields so we are wondering if we are going to have enough supply to meet the domestic demand going into next year,” Monfort adds.