2018 Pennsylvania Soybean Yield Contest Winners Announced
Lancaster County grower takes top honors
HARRISBURG, PA (January 2, 2019) – Hershey Farms LLC from Elizabethtown, Lancaster County, was the state’s top producer in the 2018 Pennsylvania Soybean Yield Contest, sponsored by the Pennsylvania Soybean Board. His winning yield was 97.19 bushels per acre. The mean yield of the contest entrants in 2018 was 79.15 bu./acre, down from the 2017 average of 80.85 bu./acre.
“Growers faced a number of challenges this year,” says Penn State Extension Educator Del Voight, who coordinates the contest. “Rainfall was much higher than normal. Spring rains affected planting dates, and we saw the impact of the rain at the end of the season, with issues including delayed harvest, white mold and sprouting.”
The contest recognized not only the state-wide grand champion, but also the top growers in each of five regions of Pennsylvania, based on maturity maps:
1st Place Overall & South-Central Region –Jim Hershey, Hershey Farms (Lancaster County) 97.19 bu./acre
1st Place Central Region – Leslie Bowman, Leshers’ Poultry (Franklin County) 88.75 bu./acre
1st Place Southeast Region – Tim Stewart (Bucks County) 86.21 bu./acre
1st Place Northern Region – Vernon Martin (Tioga County) 72.57 bu./acre
1st place Western Region – Thomas Hoovler (Mercer County) 71.06 bu./acre
In addition to the statewide title, Jim Hershey was the South-Central Region winner, planting Pioneer P27T03 in 15” rows following corn. The crop was planted using no-till techniques on May 2, 2018 at a seeding rate of 170,000 ppa. The field was harvested on October 3, 2018 at 14.05 % moisture. Hershey used Acceleron seed treatment, and Roundup Ultra, Canopy, Sharpen as a pre-herbicide, and Roundup Ultra, Classic, Dakota as a post-herbicide.
Franklin County’s Leslie Bowman won the top yield honors in the Central Region with 88.75 bu./acre. He planted Pioneer P39T28X. Tim Stewart, from Bucks County, was the top producer in the Southeast Region. He planted Asgrow AG36X6 and yielded 86.21 bu./acre. Vernon Martin of Tioga County won top honors in the Northern Region. He planted Pioneer P31T77R for a 72.57 bu./acre yield. Thomas Hoovler, Mercer County, was the top entrant in the West Tier with 71.06 bu./acre yield with Asgrow AG30X6.
As the top state winner, Jim Hershey will receive a trip for two to the Commodity Classic, the annual joint convention of the American Soybean Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Association of Wheat Growers, and the National Grain Sorghum Producers, held February 27 – March 2, 2019 in Orlando, Fla. The Regional winners also receive a trip to the 2019 Commodity Classic.
The contest was launched by the Pennsylvania Soybean Board in 1992. A summary of the crop production practices from the 2018 contest entrants will be available in January at the Pennsylvania Soybean Board booth at the 2019 Keystone Farm Show in York, Pa., and at www.pasoybean.org.
About the Pennsylvania Soybean Board
The Pennsylvania Soybean Board is a farmer-controlled Board responsible for managing Pennsylvania’s share of funds received from the nationwide Soybean Checkoff program. The funding is available under an assessment program, approved by Congress in 1990, under which soybean farmers contribute 50 cents of every $100 they receive for their beans at the first point of sale. Funds are used to develop markets, educate consumers, and research new ways to utilize and produce soybeans more efficiently.