Clark Co. farmer discusses how corn has become a cash crop in Ky.

Clark Co. farmer discusses how corn has become a cash crop in Ky.
Published: Oct. 20, 2022 at 3:21 PM EDT
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CLARK COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - Farmers are hitting the fields, across the Bluegrass, harvesting corn and soybeans.

Kentucky enjoyed a record corn crop last year and is hoping for the same this year. The majority of the corn, harvested in central and eastern Kentucky, stays right here, going into bourbon.

Brennan Gilkison, a Clark County farmer with about seven hundred acres of corn, says that it’s a team effort.

“We’ve got to focus on the big picture of agriculture,” said Gilkison. “You know, corn helps supply the livestock industry. It’ll help supply other industries...bourbon and everything as well. We like to think of it as we are in this all together.”

Gilikson says that corn has become Kentucky’s number one commodity.

“Nearly all my life, I guess, thirty years or so, since I was in high school...corn did exceptionally well. The prices were up. In 2021, the yield for corn, for a state average was up about 40 bushels,” said Gilikson. “What that means, in a nutshell, is that corn surpassed what has historically been horses or chickens, the poultry industry, as the number one cash receipt crop.”

Generating more than $1.22 billion in cash receipts, the corn industry beat out the horse industry and the poultry industry in 2021. But Gilikson is skeptical that this year’s crop will exceed last year’s.

“Prices are up, but I think the yield is going to be down by maybe 40 bushels from last year.”

But Gilkison continues making sure America is fed.