US Wheat Crop Holds Small Edge over 2018; Revised Up from Month Ago

Total production of all-wheat in the US including winter, spring and durum is forecast at slightly more than last year and last month, according to a USDA report Thursday.

In its first survey-based wheat estimates for 2019, the total production estimate was reported at 1.921 billion bu, compared with 1.884 in 2018.

The USDA pegged this year’s winter wheat crop at 1.29 billion bu, up 1% from the June forecast and up 9% from 2018. Acreage harvested is pegged up marginally from a year ago, with the national average winter wheat yield up 3.9 bu to 51.8 bu/acre.

The increase in total wheat production and winter wheat is all because of one class of wheat: Hard Red Winter. The HRW production forecast is 804 million bu, up sharply from just 662 million in 2018.

In contrast, Soft Red Winter production is placed at 259 million bu, down from 286 million last year; Hard Red Spring is placed at 542 million tu, down from 587 last year. Durum, 58 million bu vs 77 last year.

With this year’s marginally larger crop, 2019-20 U.S. all wheat ending stocks are pegged at 1 billion bu, down slightly from 1.072 in the 2018-19 marketing year which just finished on May 31.

Going into today’s report, some traders and analysts were expecting a slightly higher all wheat production number and greater ending stocks. As a result, the news was seen as supportive for futures markets. All three major US wheat futures reacted with double-digit gains.

The 2019-20 season-average farm price for US wheat is raised 10 cents/bu from a month ago at the midpoint to US$5.20.

World wheat ending stocks for 2019-20 are estimated at 286.46 million tonnes this month, down from 294.34 million in June but well above the 2018-19 ending stocks level of 275.15 million.

Source: DePutter Publishing Ltd.

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