While the peanut markets are expected to remain depressed going into the 2013 production season, there is some good news for producers this year.

“Seed supply should be plentiful, seed quality should be good, and seed prices should be considerably lower than last year, when there was such a tight supply on commercially available peanuts for the edible market,” said John Beasley, University of Georgia Extension peanut agronomist, at the recent Georgia Peanut Farm Show held in Tifton.

“Considering this past year’s growing conditions and high yields, we would expect the quality to be very good, assuming the fields being grown for seed production were managed properly, and provided they were harvested on time and received minimal mechanical damage during harvest,” he says.

Growers should see seed prices similar to those five or six years ago, says Beasley, with a minimum of 60 cents and a maximum in the 70 to 75-cent range as opposed to the $1.10 to $1.20 seen last year.

“Supply should be plentiful, but if you’re going to plant some of the newer cultivars, you may need to book early,” he adds.

In 2012, approximately 120,000 acres were planted in seed increase in the Southeastern U.S., with more than 90 percent of that being grown in Georgia, says Beasley.

“When you look at the acreage that was planted in the seed increase program in 2012 to produce the 2013 seed supply, including Georgia, Alabama and Florida, 77 percent of that seed increase acreage was in Georgia-06G, and Georgia numbers alone were up to 83 percent.

“That shows us the majority of the seed supply will be in Georgia-06G. When you consider the fact we’re going to need to reduce our peanut acreage this year to get our supply back in demand, we literally could plant 100 percent of the Southeast acreage in Georgia-06G this year, but we don’t need to do that.”