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Sorghum acreage reaches 7.3 million, most since 2015
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Sorghum acreage reaches 7.3 million, most since 2015

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Sorghum in Kansas

Red sorghum is harvested in Cuba, Kansas, a couple of years ago.

U.S. farmers are growing more sorghum than they have in any year since 2015.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released its September World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report Sept. 10, increasing estimated planted grain sorghum acres to 7.3 million, up 12% from the August report and 24% over the previous year.

“We have long known that U.S. sorghum’s potential is tremendous, whether as a solution in crop rotations that adds value for farmers or as a resource-conserving, versatile product for end users worldwide,” said Norma Ritz Johnson, executive director of the Sorghum checkoff. “U.S. sorghum farmers are ready to meet growing global demand for sorghum, and that is evidenced by this amazing growth in acreage.”

The two largest grain sorghum-producing states, Kansas and Texas, planted 3.6 million and 2.2 million acres with an increase of 20 and 26%, respectively, over the last year.

Sorghum Checkoff CEO Tim Lust said with this increase in acres and strong yield, the 2021 sorghum crop will be the most valuable in history worth over $2.7 billion.

“The Sorghum Checkoff is working tirelessly to develop and enhance marketplaces both domestically and internationally and investing in research to advance the crop while adding value for sorghum farmers,” Lust said.

The same day as the supply report, the Foreign Agricultural Service reported weekly U.S. sorghum purchase commitments of 5 million bushels from China, Mexico and unknown destinations. These commitments bring total sales for 2021-2022 to 77 million bushels or 24% of the USDA export forecast just a week into the marketing year.

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