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Northern Plains edible beans harvest nearly in the books

North Dakota farmers had harvested 77% of their dry edible beans as of the week ending Oct. 2, 2022, and in Minnesota 76% of the state's edible beans had been combined as of that date, the U.S. Agricultural Department National Agricultural Statistics Service said.

A green combine harvests pinto beans.
The edible bean harvest in North Dakota and Minnesota was nearly wrapped up in early October. Photo taken on Oct. 4, 2022, northwest of Northwood, North Dakota.
Ann Bailey / Agweek
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Despite getting in the ground later than is optimal, the North Dakota and Minnesota dry edible bean harvest is nearly completed and crop quality appears to be good.

North Dakota farmers had harvested 77% of their dry edible beans as of the week ending Oct. 2, 2022, and in Minnesota, 76% of the state's edible beans had been combined as of that date, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service said.

Both states’ harvest progress was on par with the five-year average, despite delayed planting this spring that resulted from the cold, wet spring this year.

Warm, dry weather this summer spurred crop development, and Minnesota and North Dakota farmers’ edible bean production is expected to be about average, crop watchers say.

In northwest Grand Forks County, North Dakota, for example, farmers, overall, are pleased with their edible bean yields, said Brian Shanilec, Forest River Bean Co. owner.

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"I think we have a nice crop,” Shanilec said. “I think a lot of farmers can prove their five-year proven yield."

Meanwhile, the quality of the 2022 pinto beans farmers have hauled to Forest River Bean Co. is “very good,” Shanilec said.

Further south, in Traill County, North Dakota, Dan Fuglesten, general manager of Central Valley Bean Co-op in Buxton, North Dakota, was receiving a crop that was “great quality,” Fuglesten said.

The edible bean harvest of Central Valley Bean Co-op customers was about wrapped up in the first week in October and yields, similar to farmers across North Dakota, have been average, he said.

While the amount of rain that fell on fields varied from county to county and even field to field, overall, “in North Dakota, it’s been an OK crop,” Fuglesten said.

North Dakota’s 2022 dry edible beans crop is estimated to average 1,600 pounds per acre, a 570-pound-per-acre increase over last year when dry conditions reduced yields, NASS said in its Aug. 12 crop production report. Total dry edible bean production in the state is estimated at 8.96 million hundredweight, a 40% increase over last year, the agency said.

Minnesota 2022 dry edible bean production is estimated at 2,200 pounds per acre, a 220-pound-per-acre increase over last year, according to the Aug. 12 crop production report. Edible bean production is estimated at 4.5 million pounds, down from 4.6 million in 2021, according to NASS.

Total U.S. dry edible bean production is estimated at 24.5 million pounds, up from 22.7 million in 2021, NASS said. Per acre average yields are pegged at 1,979 pounds, a 208 pounds per acre increase over last year.

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North Dakota farmers will harvest 560,000 acres of dry edible beans, 10% less than the previous year, NASS said. In Minnesota, harvested acreage is estimated at 206,000, which is down 28,000 acres from last year.

Total U.S. harvested dry edible bean acreage is estimated at 1.23 million, from 1.34 million last year, NASS said.

Ann is a journalism veteran with nearly 40 years of reporting and editing experiences on a variety of topics including agriculture and business. Story ideas or questions can be sent to Ann by email at: abailey@agweek.com or phone at: 218-779-8093.
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