On Monday, Aug. 12, the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released its August Crop Production report. Here are the facts and figures according to NASS/USDA:

Corn Production

Corn production is forecast at 8.89 billion bushels, down 7 percent from last year and down 10 percent from 2000. If realized, this would be the lowest production since 1995.

Based on conditions as of August 1, yields are expected to average 125.2 bushels per acre, down 13.0 bushels from last year. Yields are mostly lower than 2001 across much of the United States as wet weather during planting caused delays in the eastern Corn Belt.

Also, persistent hot, dry weather has stunted growth and limited yield potential over many areas of the United States. Farmers expect to harvest 71.0 million acres of corn for grain, down 1.08 million acres from June, but up 3 percent from 2001.

Soybean Production

Soybean production is forecast at 2.63 billion bushels, down 9 percent from 2001 and 5 percent below 2000. Based on August 1 conditions, yields are expected to average 36.5 bushels per acre, down 3.1 bushels from 2001.

If realized, this would be the lowest production since 1996. Yields are mostly lower than 2001 in the western Corn Belt, central Great Plains, Ohio Valley, and Atlantic Coast States. However, higher yields were reported in the Upper and Middle Mississippi Valley and southern Great Plains States.

Area planted, at 73.0 million acres, is up slightly from June, but down 1 percent from last year. Acreage for harvest is estimated at 72.0 million acres, down 1 percent from 2001.

Cotton Production

All cotton production is forecast at 18.4 million 480-pound bales, down 9 percent from last year's record high production. The yield is expected to average 675 pounds per harvested acre, down 30 pounds from 2001.

The reduced production is due to lower acreages and yields, but is partially offset by less abandonment when compared to a year ago. Upland cotton production is forecast at 17.8 million 480-pound bales, 9 percent below 2001. American-Pima cotton production is forecast at 689 thousand 480-pound bales, a decline of 2 percent from last year.

Nationwide, producers expect to harvest 13.1 million acres, 5 percent below last year. Upland cotton harvested area, at 12.8 million acres, is 5 percent less than a year ago. American-Pima harvested acreage is expected to total 263,400 acres, 2 percent less than 2001.