U.S. winter wheat production drops 24 percent


The U.S. saw a large decline in winter wheat and all wheat production during this past crop year.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s small grains summary released Sept. 29 reported winter wheat production for 2017 totaled 1.27 billion bushels, down 24 percent from the revised 2016 total of 1.67 billion bushels.

U.S. winter wheat yields averaged 50.2 bushels per acre, 5.1 bushels less than in 2016.

Illinois and Iowa set records of 76 and 68 bushels per acre, respectively. Illinois’ previous record was 74 bushels per acre set last year, and Iowa had the top mark of 63 bushels per acre in 2016.

Indiana averaged 74 bushels per acre after the previous year’s record of 81.

Illinois harvested 470 million acres of wheat, matching 2016, for an estimated production of 35.72 million bushels, nearly 1 million bushels higher than last year.

Indiana dropped from 280,000 harvested acres last year to 240,000 this year. Production is expected to tally 17.76 million bushels. The Hoosier State produced 22.68 million in 2016.

Iowa’s acres was reduced to 8,000 acres compared to 17,000 in 2016 for total production of 544,000 bushels after last year’s 1.071 million bushels.

U.S. winter wheat area harvested for grain is estimated at 25.3 million acres, down 16 percent from the previous year.

Other states with record winter wheat yield estimates were Alabama, 77 bushels per acre; New Jersey, 64; Pennsylvania, 72; and West Virginia, 69.


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