Oklahoma Wheat Crop Up, Prices Down
OKLAHOMA CITY - After years of drought, Oklahoma's wheat crop is up near a record yield this summer. That's the good news, but there's also some bad news.
The bad news is that worldwide, wheat stock is at an all-time high, so demand is low and thus the price is low, and Oklahoma wheat farmers aren't reaping the financial benefits they would like. But at least they have something to sell.
The USDA estimates the state's wheat harvest this year at 132 million bushels - 3.3 million acres at 40 bushels an acre gets you 132 million.
Officials with the state wheat commission actually think the yield per acre was more like 45 bushels, so they believe the total is up around 150 million bushels.
Either way, it's a huge improvement over last year, when the state wheat crop was 93 million bushels.
In 2014, it was just 48 million, and 105 million in 2013.
In 2012, it was at 155 million bushels, making it the last really good year for our wheat growers.
But here's the problem, Wednesday, July 13, wheat in Oklahoma was selling at a high of $3.44 a bushel, while a year ago it was going for as much as $5.38 a bushel.
Still, wheat commission officials say this pricing is allowing Oklahoma wheat to compete globally, and so they will be able to move the crop. They say about 60 percent of the Oklahoma wheat crop is exported, and most goes to Mexico, Central America, South America, South Africa and Nigeria.
Wheat Commission officials say Oklahoma's biggest competitors in the global wheat market are Russia, the EU, and Australia.