University of Minnesota study: Organic corn produces better yields grown organically than conventionally

Published: December 27, 2016

Organic corn seed varieties produced strong yields in field trials held in two Minnesota locations in 2016. The trials showed that organic corn grown using organic farming methods produced higher yields than the same corn grown using conventional methods.

The trials, which were held at the University of Minnesota’s West Central Research and Outreach Center in Morris and Southwest Research and Outreach Center in Lamberton, involved growing organic corn seed from Iowa-based Blue River Hybrids and Minnesota-based Albert Lea Seed.

The two companies sent five varieties of corn that mature from 85 to 97 days for evaluation. The field trials were conducted at two sites at both locations. One trial was grown using organic farming practices, and one was grown using conventional farming methods. The corn was planted in May and harvested in October.

The corn grown using organic practices outperformed the varieties grown using conventional methods. At the Morris organic trial, Albert Lea’s Viking 97-day organic corn produced yields of 242.4 bushels per acre and Blue River’s 88-day corn produced yields of 238.1 bushels per acre. The lowest yielding variety was Blue River’s 88-day seed, which produced 200.5 bushels per acre.

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