Colorado Ranked 2nd in U.S. Winter Wheat Production

September 30, 2009, Centennial, Colo. USDA announced today that Colorado is ranked 2nd in U.S. winter wheat production for 2009, with estimated production of 98,000,000 bushels of winter wheat harvested, ranking only behind Kansas and moving ahead of Washington state.

On a 10-year average, Colorado has been 8th in U.S. winter wheat production, and was ranked 10th last year. Darrell Hanavan, executive director for the Colorado Wheat Administrative Committee, said Colorado has never before been ranked so high. Hanavan says cool June weather during grain filling and abundant moisture helped produce a large crop and crop failures in Texas and Oklahoma helped move Colorado up in the rankings.

Colorado’s near-record yields far surpassed all of our expectations, said Chris Tallman, a third-generation family farmer from near Brandon, Colo. We knew we had an above-average crop, but couldn’t have anticipated being second in U.S. winter wheat production. I’ve never raised such a good crop on so little moisture. This record crop shows that the commitment and perseverance of Colorado farmers sometimes pays off.

Colorado farmers have to sell more wheat to make the same amount of money as last year. Last years average price per bushel was $6.47. The current price farmers are receiving for their wheat is $3.50-$4.00 per bushel.

USDA increased their estimate of Colorado winter wheat acres harvested to 2,450,000 from 2,400,000 estimated on August 12, and their estimated yield per acre from 39 bushels per acre to 40 bushels per acre.

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