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ANNUAL WHEAT TOUR ESTIMATES LOW YIELDS FOR KANSAS
Source: U.S. Wheat Associates news release

Seventy-five representatives from across the world's grain chain experienced firsthand the dry, cold, windy conditions that have deteriorated the Kansas hard red winter (HRW) wheat crop this year on the HRW Wheat Quality Tour.

After three days and 587 stops across the entire span of the state, scouts projected an average Kansas wheat yield at 33.2 bushels per acre, the poorest in 13 years.

Kansas farmers plant more HRW acres than any other state, representing about 32 percent of total U.S. HRW seeded area on average. Tour participants projected total 2014 Kansas wheat production at 260.6 million bushels, the lowest estimate since 2011. If realized, this would be the lowest production since 1996 when Kansas farmers harvested a total 255.2 million bushels.

Overall, tour reports indicated the wheat crop across the state is behind normal crop progress, short and in need of moisture soon.

Just 21 percent of the wheat crop was rated good to excellent as of April 28, according to the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). Overall, NASS reported that 56 percent of the Kanas wheat crop was jointed as of April 28, compared to the five-year average of 74 percent. Just 4 percent is headed, slightly behind the five-year average of 9 percent.

Representatives from Colorado, Nebraska and Oklahoma also joined the tour to share perspective and estimates from their respective states.

Darrell Hanavan, executive director of the Colorado Wheat Administrative Committee, projected an average Colorado wheat yield of 32.0 bushels per acre on Tuesday, significantly more than the 2013/14 Colorado crop. For Nebraska, Royce Schaneman, executive director of the Nebraska Wheat Board, also reported on Tuesday improved wheat yields of 45.0 bushels per acre, above the state's 10-year average of 41.4 bushels per acre.

Mark Hodges, executive director of Plains Grains, Inc., shared Oklahoma's estimates with the group on Wednesday. He predicted average production of 18.52 bushels per acre and total production at 66.5 million bushels, well below last year's 115 million bushels.

USDA will update overall U.S. wheat production numbers on May 9 in the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report.


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