Wednesday, April 21, 2010

April 20 Arkansas Rice Situation

The weather this spring has allowed rice to be planted across most of the state. As of April 19, farmers had planted an estimated 53% of the rice acreage. This compares to only 19% last week and only 23% this time last year. It is also well ahead of the 5-year average of 30% for this week. The USDA estimates that 16% of the rice acreage has emerged. This compares to 3% last year at this time and and 7% for the 5-year average. Rice farmers in Arkansas demonstrated just how much rice they can plant in week when the weather cooperates. A third of the rice acres (~500,000 acres) was planted last week.

Average temperatures were 1 to 11 degrees above normal for the week ending April 19. Rainfall for the week ending April 19 ranged from a low of none at several locations to a high of 0.5 inches at Mena. Overall, soil moisture supplies were 1% very short, 26% short, 67% adequate, and 6% surplus.

The USDA planting intentions report that was released at the end of March shows that rice acreage is expected to increase by 10% from 2009. The anticipated acreage of 1.631 million acres is the largest acreage since 2005 when we planted an estimated record 1.635 million acres. Medium grain rice for Arkansas is estimated at 200,000 acres, a decrease of 60,000 acres from 2009.

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