Hot weather good for AR cotton, not rice, soybeans

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - The hot and dry summer of 2010 has been good for Arkansas' cotton crop - but not so for soybeans and the state's number one crop - rice. The weather is ideal for cotton and U.S. Department of Agriculture forecasts show the crop appears to be one of the best in recent memory.

Marked Tree cotton farmer George Willoughby told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that most of his cotton hasn't had rain since July 29 - leading to better quality cotton that draws better prices. But the heat has left rice stressed and now forecast for a yield of 6,400 pounds an acre.

That would be the lowest yield since 2001. Soybean production is also forecast to be down. Current estimates are for an 11 percent decline from last year's crop.

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