New US Spring Wheat Crop Struggles Against Drought

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Even as conditions improve for the big US hard red winter wheat crop, hot and dry weather in the Northern Plains is hurting prospects for newly planted spring wheat. The September futures contract for the spring crop, known as Minneapolis wheat, has jumped more than $1.00 a bushel in the past few trading days to score new contract highs. Cash prices are up north of 20% since May 26 and can be viewed here

Gro forecasts call for continued dry conditions in the region over the next couple of weeks. Temperatures in the 90s (Fahrenheit), and even over 100 in some areas, are exacerbating current drought conditions, as shown via the Gro Drought Index. Spring wheat makes up about one-third of total US wheat production, with winter wheat comprising the rest. 

Similar dry conditions also threaten spring wheat production in Canada, the world’s biggest producer of spring wheat. When the growing season gets underway, Gro’s Canada Spring Wheat Yield Forecast Model provides daily yield forecasts at the district level across Canada's largest wheat-producing provinces.

US spring wheat crop conditions are down sharply, rating just 43% good-to-excellent in the latest week compared with 80% a year ago, and the lowest rating since 1988. North Dakota, which produces roughly half of the US crop, is rated 31% good-to-excellent. Gro expects further declines in this afternoon’s crop conditions report given recent weather.

While good-to-excellent crop conditions from the USDA are a closely followed indicator, Gro’s Growing Conditions app offers greater detail on growing conditions worldwide and how they relate to past growing seasons and crop yields. Join us on June 17 and June 22 for a webinar to learn how Gro's Growing Conditions app can help you form the most detailed picture of growing conditions and mitigate weather-related risk.

This insight was powered by the Gro platform, which enables better and faster decisions about factors affecting the entire global agricultural ecosystem. Gro organizes over 40,000 datasets from sources around the world into a unified ontology, which allows users to derive valuable insights such as this one. You can explore the data available on Gro with a free account, or please get in touch if you would like to learn more about a specific crop, region, or business issue.

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