Georgia’s peanut acreage is expected to decrease in 2021. The drop would be small, decreasing from 810,000 in 2020 to about 790,000 this year, according to the USDA Prospective Plantings Report.
Georgia Peanut Commission Executive Director Don Koehler said the decrease is necessary to help farmers get their crop rotations in order.
“We’re still going to have a lot of peanuts. The other thing that it does is, it keeps a little mystery in the marketplace, and it’s kept prices stronger,” Koehler said. “I’d rather folks plant 2% fewer acres and have $25 more a ton on everything they plant because they have that opportunity.”
There are also still some unknowns regarding corn production, and whether producers got all of their corn planted following a wet winter. That could potentially bump those peanut acres up some.
“I don’t think the 790,000 acres in Georgia and 1.625 million acres in the nation is too many acres of peanuts. I think we’re at a pretty good equilibrium level right now. It gives us an opportunity to do a little bit of rotation, especially with strong numbers on corn right now,” Koehler added. “The corn numbers are the strongest in Georgia right now and nationwide as far as increases. Corn numbers are good because that gives us a grass crop in rotation.”
This year’s projected peanut acres would still be considerably more than the 675,000 planted in 2019.