La. farmers plant more soybeans, less cotton
NEW ORLEANS - The U.S. Department of Agriculture says Louisiana farmers are planting more soybeans than they have in 14 years but may tie a record low for cotton.
Changing weather patterns appeared to be a factor as the wet early spring gave way to a drier pattern. So farmers are planting more soybeans and less rice than originally expected.
The USDA's July crop report says Louisiana farmers are planting 1.14 million acres of soybeans, the highest since 1.2 million acres in 1998 and 70,000 acres more than projected in March.
They've planted about 400,000 acres of rice, down 23,000 from 2011 and 55,000 acres less than they'd planned in March.
Officials expect 230,000 acres to be planted in cotton, tying a low-acreage record set in 2009.