U.S. winter wheat ratings slip further

by World Grain Staff
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KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI, U.S. — U.S. winter wheat condition ratings, already at 27-year lows, slipped further during the week ended Nov. 11, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said in its latest Crop Progress report.
Winter wheat in the 18 major growing states was rated 36% good to excellent, 42% fair and 22% poor to very poor, compared with 39% good to excellent, 42% fair and 19% poor to very poor a week earlier and with 50% good to excellent, 36% fair and 14% poor to very poor at the same time last year, the USDA said.
Ratings improved in eight states, declined in nine states and were unchanged in one. Hard winter wheat states continued to fare the worst, especially South Dakota where the crop was rated 3% good to excellent and 53% poor to very poor compared with 4% good to excellent and 52% poor to very poor a week earlier.
Kansas wheat was rated 33% good to excellent (37% a week earlier) and 21% poor to very poor, (13% week earlier), Oklahoma 13% good to excellent (21%) and 38% poor to very poor (30%), Texas 30% good to excellent (34%) and 28% poor to very poor (24%), Colorado 31% good to excellent (27%) and 31% poor to very poor (28%), Nebraska 15% good to excellent (13%) and 42% poor to very poor (49%) and Montana 29% good to excellent (30%) and 8% poor to very poor (14%).
The crop was much better in the soft winter wheat states relative to hard winter. The soft wheat crop rated good to excellent was 72% in Illinois (78% a week earlier), 74% in Indiana (72%), 71% in Ohio (69%), 69% in Michigan (71%), 70% in Arkansas (55%), 62% in Missouri (54%) and 71% in North Carolina (77%).
Winter wheat was 95% planted in the 18 states compared with 94% as the 2007-11 average for the date, with Colorado, Nebraska, South Dakota and Washington completed as of Nov. 11. The crop was 79% emerged compared with 81% as the five-year average.
Although the fall crop condition ratings were a concern, veteran crop watchers have noted that spring rainfall remains the key determinate of winter wheat yields.
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