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Arkansas Corn Crop Defies Drought

24 August 2012

US - While most of the Corn Belt is in the grip of one of the worst droughts in modern times, experts say some Arkansas cropland has been fairing much better, and irrigated farmland in the state has been especially resilient this Summer.

According to the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture, the state’s corn crop is in much better shape than the rest of the nation.

However, because of the rough weather conditions during the growing season this year, land sales have been scarce as of late due to a dramatic increase in commodity prices.

“Some smaller tracts have sold in the state have sold for $6,000 to $7,000 an acre, but without the same return on investment as we have seen in prior years,” said Linda Niebur, national director of farms for United Country Real Estate and broker associate with United Country – Mason & Morse Farm Ranch Company.

Investments on Arkansas agriculture properties have shown a 3.5 to 4.5 per cent in the past, usually on crop share rental structures.

“The highest known per-acre transaction for a large tract traded in 2011 provided a projected 3.8 per cent return on a crop share rent,” said Niebur. “Few, if any, large as sales have provided the level of crop diversity buyers are looking for.”

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