U.S.D.A. reduces wheat production estimate 2%

by Ron Sterk
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WASHINGTON — All wheat production in 2007 was estimated at 2,066,722,000 bus, down 2% from August but up 254,686,000 bus, or 14%, from 1,812,036,000 bus in 2006, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in its Small Grains 2007 Summary (click here to read report).

Durum production was estimated at 71,686,000 bus, down 7% from August but up 18,211,000 bus, or 34%, from 53,475,000 bus last year, the U.S.D.A. said. The wheat stocks number was below the average of pre-report trade expectations as well as below the low end of the range.

Production of spring wheat other than durum was estimated at 479,047,000 bus, down 4% from August but up 18,567,000 bus, or 4%, from 460,480,000 bus in 2006.

Winter wheat production was estimated at 1,515,989,000 bus, down 1% from August but up 217,908,000 bus, or 17%, from 1,298,081,000 bus a year ago.

U.S.D.A. numbers for all wheat, winter wheat, other spring wheat and durum all were below the average of pre-report trade expectations.

In wheat by class estimates, the U.S.D.A. raised hard red winter wheat production by 13,593,000 bus from August, to 961,588,000 bus, but lowered soft red winter wheat production by 1,678,000 bus, to 357,897,000 bus. The hard red number was above trade expectations but the soft red estimate was below expectations.

White winter wheat production was lowered 33,188,000 bus from August, to 196,504,000 bus, consisting of 175,044,000 bus soft white and 21,460,000 bus hard.

Hard red spring wheat production for 2007 was estimated at 448,904,000 bus, down 24,576,000 bus from August. All white spring wheat was raised 3,550,000 bus, to 30,143,000 bus, consisting of 24,554,000 bus soft white spring and 5,589,000 bus hard white.

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