Non-GMO Corn Strip Trials: Yield and Quality
Corn (Zea mays) is a major crop across the Midwestern U.S. Yields have been steadily increasing in Iowa from an average of 48.5 bu/ ac in 1950 to an average of 171 bu/ac in 2011 (USDA NASS). Grain quality, specific fractions of protein, starch, essential amino acids, and other contents have not stayed steady over this time period. Varieties of non-GMO corn grown in Iowa and Ohio in 2011 were tested for grain quality: oil, protein, lysine, methionine, and cystine. Quality traits were highly variable with protein ranging from much lower than expected (6.65%) to above average (9.06%). At the Gilbert farm eMerge 619 yielded both the most grain and the highest percentage protein resulting in the greatest pounds-of-protein/A at 792.46 (α=.05 level) while no differences among hybrids were measured at the Kress farm.