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Mississippi Soybean Acres and Yields

Each year, the MSPB solicits proposals for activities that are designed to enhance production on the state’s soybean acres. The distribution of and yields from Mississippi’s soybean acres can be used to assess where research and extension activities are needed to enhance or improve yields to do the most good in the coming years.

Soybean county estimates (2012 and 2013-2014) compiled by NASS give a definitive yield picture to aid in this determination. A summary of that information is shown in the below table.




























































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Location of and Yield (bu/acre) from Mississippi Harvested Soybean Acres, 2012-2014
  2012        2013        2014       
County Acres Bu/acre Acres Bu/acre Acres Bu/acre
North Delta (NASS District 10)
Bolivar 235,000 46.3 219,000 49.8 262,000 57.3
Coahoma 104,300 44.0 116,500 50.3 119,300 51.1
Quitman 84,100 34.7 84,000 39.3 72,900 38.4
Tallahatchie 117,600 33.9 115,500 47.5 119,800 51.8
Tunica 91,000 31.9 92,000 45.1 92,000 42.4
Total/Average 632,000 40.0 627,000 45.8 666,000 51.1

South Delta (NASS District 40)


Humphreys 79,000 46.8 76,000 50.3 93,000 55.0
Issaquena 50,200 51.4 48,000 47.1 61,000 55.6
Leflore 111,500 54.8 111,500 49.1 130,000 59.2
Sharkey 68,400 54.8 67,000 56.7 86,500 60.1
Sunflower 196,500 51.6 182,000 53.6 222,000 57.8
Washington 189,500 57.4 185,000 51.6 223,000 64.9
Yazoo 55,900 46.7 56,500 48.7 66,500 53.1
Total/Average 751,000 53.0 726,000 50.2 882,000 59.9

North Central (NASS District 20)


Benton 13,700 33.6 14,800 34.5 14,500 43.1
Calhoun 19,200 43.0 28,500 40.7 28,700 42.0
Desoto 36,000 30.6 33,500 34.2 35,700 33.3
Grenada ** 7,400 36.1 4,700 34.3
Marshall 24,400 35.9 22,000 30.2 24,000 38.3
Panola 45,000 37.1 44,000 44.6 37,000 45.1
Tate 17,800 30.2 16,800 37.5 18,100 44.5
Other Counties 18,200 35.7 15,000 38.0 13,800 49.6
Total/Average 174,300 35.1 182,000 37.7 176,500 41.1

Northeast (NASS District 30)


Alcorn 11,600 42.2 17,800 41.0 13,300 41.0
Itawamba 13,700 42.3 14,400 32.3 14,500 39.7
Lee 41,700 37.1 48,100 32.9 43,500 36.0
Pontotoc 22,000 38.4 28,200 35.4 27,800 39.2
Prentiss 21,000 35.2 21,800 33.7 21,600 37.5
Tippah 10,400 34.4 11,800 40.2 10,100 48.3
Tishmingo 2,700 40.4 3,700 40.3 4,700 39.8
Union 20,600 40.8 24,700 36.2 24,500 42.5
Total/Average 143,700 38.3 170,500 35.3 160,000 39.4

East Central (NASS District 60)


Chickasaw 28,200 42.0 32,200 36.0 34,600 42.8
Clay 8,500 45.3 ** **
Lowndes 12,900 39.2 15,600 33.3 **
Monroe 34,600 42.4 42,700 37.5 44,200 40.1
Noxubee 19,100 47.6 24,900 51.3 23,500 50.6
Other Counties 3,000 44.0 13,100 41.5 27,700 36.6
Total/Average 106,300 43.1 128,500 39.7 130,000 42.0

Central (NASS District 50)


Attala 3,450 46.1 5,100 32.4 4,800 46.0
Carroll 9,850 48.8 11,400 38.7 12,900 52.7
Holmes 28,300 50.4 29,500 42.9 32,500 53.5
Madison 14,200 44.6 16,000 39.7 15,300 43.0
Montgomery 3,250 45.2 **
Rankin 6,750 47.9 7,700 45.5 8,600 47.1
Scott 5,750 46.6 5,700 45.6 6,300 38.9
Webster ** 4,200 31.2 5,100 38.4
Other Counties 5,350 40.7 9,100 37.1 6,500 40.0
Total/Average 76,900 47.5 88,700 40.4 92,000 47.9

Southwest (NASS District 70)


Claiborne ** 3,000 46.7 4,400 55.0
Hinds 8,600 49.0 10,300 42.2 11,500 43.7
Jefferson 4,600 48.9 ** 6,900 47.1
Warren 18,200 46.2 ** 20,800 53.0
Other Counties 17,600 44.7 36,600 43.9 17,600 58.4
Total/Average 49,000 46.4 49,900 43.7 61,200 52.3

South Central (NASS District 80)


All counties *** 11,600 36.6 ***

Southeast (NASS District 90)


All counties *** 5,800 39.7 ***
Other Districts 16,800 33.5 --- --- 22,300 40.9
State Total 1,950,000 45.0 1,990,000 46.0 2,200,000 52.0
**Included in other counties.***Included in other districts.


The Delta counties (Districts 10 and 40) contained 71% (1,383,000 acres), 68% (1,353,000 acres), and 70% (1,548,000 acres) of the state’s soybean acres in 2012, 2013, and 2014, respectively.

The North Central and Central counties (Districts 20 and 50) contained 13% (251,200 acres), 13.5% (270,700 acres), and 12% (268,500 acres) of the state’s soybean acres in 2012, 2013, and 2014, respectively.

The Northeast and East Central counties (Districts 30 and 60) contained 13% (250,000 acres), 15% (299,000 acres), and 13% (290,000 acres) of the state’s soybean acres in 2012, 2013, and 2014, respectively.

South Mississippi counties (Districts 70, 80, and 90) contained less than 4% of the state’s soybean acres in all years.

All districts had higher yields in 2014 than in the previous two years, which resulted in the state average yield of 52 bu/acre, a new record.

It is obvious from the above data that average soybean yields are quite different among counties within a district; e.g. North Delta and North Central Districts. This is especially noteworthy in the East Central District in 2013 and 2014, where average yields in Noxubee County were considerably higher than average yields in the other counties in that district, and were more in line with the high average yields in the Delta counties.

There was considerable difference in average yields among the districts (e.g. South Delta vs. all other districts). Average yields from the North Central and Northeast District counties were the lowest or among the lowest in all three years. There is little doubt that rainfall patterns and irrigation played a significant role in these yield differences, but it logically can be assumed that doublecropping soybeans following wheat on a significant acreage in the two lowest-yielding districts may have been a contributing factor as well.

Average yields of soybeans in the South Delta counties were the highest among all NASS districts in all three years. All counties in this district produced average yields above 53 bu/acre. I suspect this district had the greatest irrigated acreage all years.

The above soybean yield differences among NASS districts can be subjectively analyzed, but objective analysis of these differences is impossible without a thorough knowledge of just what the enhancing or limiting factors in each respective county/district are. Identifying those factors and planning activities to address them should be a part of any soybean research and extension effort at representative sites within each district.

I encourage those who plan to initiate and conduct research and extension activities in Mississippi to consider the above data when planning those activities. This will ensure that limited time and resources will be allocated to addressing production problems in those areas of the state that are lagging behind in average yield, and to identifying the production practices that lead to high yields in the districts that continually produce those high yields. When you have information that supports either of the above objectives, it is incumbent upon you to transfer that information and technology to producers in those regions.

Two final points.

  • It likely will be easier to raise yields in the lower-yielding counties if the factors that limit yield in those areas can be identified. This will involve applying all BMP’s that are proven to result in the highest yields if that is not already being done.

  • The challenge to raising yields in the higher-yielding counties will be determining the incremental yield gains that can be achieved by micro-managing known BMP’s, probably on a field-by-field basis.


Composed by Larry G. Heatherly, Feb. 2015, larryheatherly@bellsouth.net