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More Double-Cropping Means More No-Till

With a push by the Biden administration to expand double-cropped acres by 100% over the next 8 years, you can bet most of this anticipated increase will be no-tilled. After all, farmers have long recognized no-till makes the most economic, cost-cutting and environmental sense when double-cropping wheat and soybeans.

A Call to Farms

In a mid-May visit to the farm of Jeff and Eugenia O’Connor in Kankakee, Ill., President Biden called for an expansion of double-cropped acres to fill part of the gap in global food supplies created by the war in Ukraine. This means expanding our 12-15 million acres currently being double-cropped to 30 million acres by 2030.

Located 60 miles south of Chicago, the O’Connor’s have harvested 80-bushel double-cropped soybeans after wheat in an area well north of where this double-crop combination has been most popular.

$10 Per Acre Savings

With Biden’s plan, USDA is offering a reduction of $10 per acre in double-cropping insurance premiums in nearly two-thirds of all U.S. countries to encourage more wheat and soybean production. 

The President earlier this spring had asked Congress to provide a $10-per-acre direct payment to growers who plant soybeans after winter wheat in 2023. When that plan didn’t gain momentum, a shift was made to reduce crop insurance premiums by $10 per acre for double-cropped ground.

However, University of Illinois ag economists indicate USDA’s $10 per-acre crop insurance premium reduction with double-cropping will have limited impact on wheat and soybean acres. 

Even so, there are major benefits to…

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Frank Lessiter

Frank Lessiter has served as editor of No-Till Farmer since the publication was launched in November of 1972. Raised on a six-generation Michigan Centennial Farm, he has spent his entire career in agricultural journalism. Lessiter is a dairy science graduate from Michigan State University.

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