March 20, 2023

Piatt ‘three-peats’ with top soybean yield

McLean leading producer

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Piatt County continued its top soybean yield reign in the Prairie State during the 2022 growing season and Stark County had the leading corn yield average.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture released its county estimates Feb. 24.

Illinois’ soybeans averaged 63 bushels per acre, bolstered by eight counties surpassing the 70-bushel average.

Piatt County averaged 74.2 bushels per acre, slightly below last year’s leading yield of 76.1. Piatt County had 120,100 harvested acres of soybeans.

Other counties in the 70s range were: McLean County, 73.8; Sangamon County, 72.7; Scott County, 72.1; Logan County, 71.8; Tazewell County, 71; Stark County, 70.8; and Morgan County, 70.

McLean County continued to be the leader in total soybean production, harvesting 21.186 million bushels, averaging 68.8 bushels per acre across 308,000 acres.

McLean County produced 20.182 million bushels the previous year with a 66.5-bushel average across 303,500 harvested acres.

Iroquois County was runner-up in production with 19.044 million bushels, averaging 63.8 bushels per acre on 298,500 harvested acres.


Stark County averaged 240.6 bushels per acre, 23.4 bushels above its 2021 average, with 84,700 harvested acres.

Rounding out the counties averaging 230-plus bushels per acre were: Woodford County, 235.7; Ogle County, 234.7; DeWitt County, 232.9; Macon County, 232.5; McLean County, 232.3; Henry County, 231.9; and Sangamon County, 231.3. Tazewell County just missed a 230 average by 0.1.

McLean County continues to be the nation’s top corn-producing county, hitting 70.981 million bushels from 305,500 harvested acres, compared to 64.38 million bushels and 313,000 harvested acres in 2021.


The USDA pegged the Illinois average soybean yield at 63 bushels per acre, a bushel below the record set in 2021 and 3 above 2020.

The 2022 planted area was 10.8 million acres and a harvested area of 10.75 million. There were 10.51 million acres of soybeans planted in 2021. Production totaled 677.25 million bushels after harvesting 672.6 million in 2021.

Thirty-seven counties hit or surpassed the 65-bushel soybean yield average, compared to 31 counties hitting that mark in 2021.

The 214-bushel per acre yield average for Illinois estimated by USDA surpasses the 2018 record by 4 bushels and 12 above 2021.

The state had 10.8 million planted acres and 10.6 million harvested acres and produced over 2.268 billion bushels. Illinois produced 2.192 billion bushels in 2021.

Of the counties listed in the report, 65 averaged over 200 bushels per acre, compared to 44 counties in 2021 and 24 in 2020.

By comparison, not quite half of the state’s 102 counties topped the 200 mark for corn during the previous record-breaking season of 2018.

Tom Doran

Tom Doran

Field Editor