World wheat production prospects boosted this month

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World wheat production in 2011/12 is forecast at 678.1 million tons, up 6.0 million this month. The largest increase is for Canada, where the wheat crop is forecast up 2.5 million tons to 24.0 million this month based on an almost 7-percent (0.55 million hectares) rise in wheat area, and a 4-percent increase in yields. Despite many convincing signs of a substantial reduction of seeded wheat area in Saskatchewan and Manitoba due to persistent rains that severely disrupted fieldwork in May and June, wheat area to be harvested turned out larger than anticipated and is up 3.4 percent for the year.

Growing conditions in August were very favorable in the main wheat-producing regions in the Prairies, as well as in Ontario, with no early frosts in key growing areas and warm temperatures helping to dry out soggy soil. Winter wheat harvesting– which is about 8 percent of wheat area and 12.5 percent of total wheat production this year– is already complete. Spring wheat harvesting is in full swing, and it appears that a combination of optimal temperatures and adequate precipitation during the flowering and filling stages of crop development mitigated previously projected losses and boosted yields, as confirmed by increased estimates from Statistics Canada.

EU-27 wheat production is expected to reach 135.8 million tons in 2011/12, up 2.3 million this month. Wheat harvesting of the 2011/12 crop is virtually complete, but statistical offices in individual countries continue to compile and revise wheat production numbers.

The largest increase is in Germany, up 0.8 million tons to 23.0 million. Several reports indicate that the effect of the extreme dryness in March through May on wheat yields was overstated at the time,
and that rains in June came just in time during the crop filling stage to restore wheat yield potential to nearly the level of last year. Wheat production expectations continue to increase for Romania and Bulgaria, up 0.6 and 0.2 million tons, respectively. In France and Spain, official government reports suggest 0.5- and 0.3-million-ton increases in the countries’ wheat production to 35.0 and 6.5 million tons, respectively.

Wheat production is expected to be higher in Ukraine, up 1.0 million tons to 22.0 million, as indicated by the latest harvest reports. The wheat production forecast is up 0.2 million tons for both Morocco and Brazil, to 6.1 and 5.0 million, respectively. In Morocco, the wheat harvest is complete, while in Brazil harvesting will begin in September (Central South)─October (Rio Grande de Sul). The Brazilian wheat yield is currently projected slightly below a 10-year trend, as wheat crop conditions are pretty normal, with no threat of frosts and freezes, as the Southern Hemisphere enters spring. There is a 0.2-
million-ton reduction for Uzbekistan, and small increase in wheat production for Moldova, reflecting government reports.

Source: USDA-ERS Wheat Outlook (9/14/2011)

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