U.S. wheat crop hit by dry winter then soggy spring, adding to global tightness

Date: 2022.06.01

North Dakota farmer Dwight Grotberg wanted to plant more wheat this spring to capitalize on soaring prices since Russia's invasion of Ukraine cut grain exports and left the world short of millions of tonnes of wheat supply.

Heavy rain has prevented Grotberg from planting as much wheat crop as he wanted and is hampering farmers across the state, the top U.S. grower of spring wheat.

Instead of boosting supply, North Dakota expected to plant wheat over the smallest share of its farmland on record, according to government data.

The United States is the world's fourth-largest wheat exporter and problems are hitting output at a time when the world can ill afford to lose any more supplies of the staple grain amid a global food crisis.

Benchmark Chicago Board of Trade wheat prices surged 50% to more than $13.60 a bushel after Russia's invasion in February halted shipments of nearly a third of the world's wheat exports, and little has gone right for wheat since then.

Worsening harvest prospects in China and parts of Europe, followed by an export ban by major producer India, have tightened stocks and exacerbated global food supply concerns.

The United Nations has warned the impact of the war on grains, oils, fuel and fertilizer could throw millions of people into famine and take years to resolve.

Read more here.

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