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Kentucky winter wheat production up 27% from 2018


LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released the 2019 Small Grains Summary report today, showing an increase in Kentucky’s winter wheat production from a year ago. A higher yield per acre drove the increase, along with an increase in the number of acres harvested for grain.

“Rain hampered seeding last fall and the crop struggled early, but generally favorable conditions thereafter helped the crop finish well,” said David Knopf, director of the NASS Eastern Mountain Regional Office in Kentucky. “Yield was above the five year average, while production was below the five year average.”

Kentucky farmers harvested 25.1 million bushels of winter wheat during the summer of 2019 according to the Kentucky Field Office of USDA’S National Agricultural Statistics Service. This was up 27% from the previous year. Yield is estimated at 76.0 bushels per acre, up 10.0 bushels from 2018. Farmers seeded 460,000 acres last fall, up 10,000 acres from 2018. Area harvested for grain totaled 330,000 acres. Acres for other uses totaled 130,000 acres and was used as cover crop, cut as hay, chopped for silage or abandoned.

Production of all wheat for the U.S. totaled 1.96 billion bushels, up 4% from 2018. Grain area harvested totaled 38.1 million acres, down 4% from the previous year. The United States yield is estimated at 51.6 bushels per acre, up 4.0 bushels from last year. The levels of production and changes from 2018 by type are winter wheat, 1.30 billion bushels, up 10%; other spring wheat, 600 million bushels, down 4%, and durum wheat, 57.7 million bushels, down 26%.