Charleston, W.Va. – Miltenberger Farm in Keyser finished second in the nation in its category in the 2011 National Corn Yield Contest, sponsored by the National Corn Growers Association. The Miltenbergers achieved 279.6187 bushels per acre from Pioneer P1615HR seed in the “A Non-Irrigated” category. Finishing first was a Virginia field owned by Justice Family Farms of Beckley, W.Va., which grew Pioneer P2023HR corn that yielded 288.4817 bushels per acre.
“That is quite a yield and quite an honor for West Virginia and the Miltenbergers,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Gus R. Douglass. “I can remember when you were considered a good grower when you could manage 50 bushels an acre. The yields farmers are getting these days are simply amazing and a credit to the advanced seeds and technology being used.”
Chris Miltenberger said participating in the contest has been an educational experience that has helped increase yields by 50 to 60 bushels per acre across his operation.
“This is my biggest accomplishment in my farming career. It’s quite exciting to place nationally,” Miltenberger said. “It’s a controlled experiment effectively, so it helps you learn the best techniques. We do everything we can to do it right and pray the good Lord sends us the weather we need to do it.”
A former state-level winner, Miltenberger noted that he regularly uses poultry litter produced in the region for fertilizer, and hinted that he has some new ideas he’s going to try this year to boost yield even further.
“Pioneer has sent us to the Commodity Classic Trade Show in past years. You get to meet a lot of the best corn growers in the country,” he said. “I’ve had lots of fun playing with it. It’s taught me a lot about growing corn. It’s helped us achieve the level of success we have.”
Other first place finishers within West Virginia include: Ronald L. Widmyer of Charles Town, Michael Wolpert of Hurricane, Jeanne K. Bailey of Hurricane and Federal Hill Farm Inc. of Charles Town.
While there is no overall contest winner, yields ranged from 277.5 to 429.0 bushels per acre. The 18 winners in six production categories had verified yields averaging more than 313.107 bushels per acre, compared to the projected national average of 146.7 bushels per acre in 2011.
The National Corn Yield Contest is in its 47th year. With 8,425 entries, the 2011 NCGA National Corn Yield Contest set a new participation record – an 18 percent increase over 2010 and a 70 percent increase over 2007.
The national and state contest winners will be honored March 1-3 at the 2012 Commodity Classic in Nashville, Tenn. Contest winners will also be featured in a special edition of Farm Journal magazine and NCYC Corn Yield Guide.
The West Virginia Department of Agriculture protects plant, animal and human health through a variety of scientific, regulatory and consumer protection programs, as mandated by state law. The Commissioner of Agriculture is one of six statewide elected officials in West Virginia. For more information, visit www.wvagriculture.org.
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