Checking in on the harvest

The corn harvest remains in full swing for many Nebraska farmers during the week of November 4.

We caught up with Nebraska Corn Board member and Giltner producer Brandon Hunnicutt to talk about the corn harvest. "Some guys got done early, but some people like us are still bringing corn out of the field," Hunnicutt said. "The harvest is moving along at a better pace then what we anticipated a month and a half ago."

This year's weather conditions have certainly been up and down, and that has been a challenge for farmers. "Going into the summer, we thought we'd be down about 10 to 15-percent. That's what we are probably going to end up with," Hunnicutt said. "Some of the fields are good, some are just OK, and like many have said, it's been an up and down year. We've seen everything from whole farm averages of 230 bushels per acre, and we've heard some results at much less. Some of that probably came down to a loss of nitrogen and timing of nitrogen, mixed with rainfall and cloudy weather in August."

"Going into harvest, we went out and bought two big tow ropes, because we assumed we would be getting stuck at some point," Hunnicutt said. "Luckily, the rains held off, and that's been a blessing. The challenges overall have been trying to figure out what hybrids work in which fields this year."

When it comes to the markets, Hunnicutt says it's always a challenge. "By the time we get some good news, such as a rumor of China buying grain, something comes in and drives it back down," Hunnicutt said. "There's still uncertainty in the market, so farmers will have to be cautious making marketing decisions in the coming year."