Day One of Hard Red Winter Wheat Crop Tour Sees 26% Drop in Yield From Year Ago- 50% Off Two Years Ago

Kansas Wheat Crop Tour- Day One near Cawker City, Ks (From Twitter as posted by Joel Reichenberger with DTN)

Going in- the more than a hundred crop scouts- veterans of previous tours as well as firstimers here in 2023- expected to see a lot of drought stressed wheat. On Day One, they saw some really good wheat early as they left Manhattan, Kansas, but that did not last. Oklahoma Wheat Grower President Dennis Schoenhals of Kremlin, Oklahoma is one of those firstimers on the 2023 tour- and told Oklahoma Farm Report’s Ron Hays that the first few stops they made- wheat had responded to recent rains and looked good and yields were reflecting the recent improvement. But- as they crossed US 81 going west- the landscape- and the wheat fields they sampled- turned decidedly worse.

Many fields were already headed out, very short and under a lot of drought stress. You can listen to the Oklahoma Farm Report’s Ron Hays talk with Dennis Schoenhals about what he saw traveling from Manhattan to Colby on Tuesday by clicking on the Listen Bar below:

Ron Hays talks with Dennis Schoenhals, Oklahoma Wheat Grower President as they talk about Day One of the Hard Red Winter Wheat Crop Tour

2023 Kansas Wheat Crop Tour- Day One Near Wakenney- Picture taken by Andrew Zollen and posted on Twitter

As the scouts ended their day and discussed what each car load of scouts saw and measured- they tallied up 318 total stops and came up with an average yield of 29.8 bushels per acre for day one- versus 39.5 bushels per acre over the same routes a year ago and 59.2 bushels per acre in 2021.

Day One Route Results- as posted on Twitter by Jennifer Latzke of Kansas Farmer

Based on the May USDA Crop Production Report released last Friday, Statewide, based on May 1 conditions, Kansas’ 2023 winter wheat crop is forecast at 191.4 million bushels, down 42.8 million bushels from last year’s crop, according to NASS. Average yield is forecast at 29 bushels per acre, down 8 bushels from last year. Acreage to be harvested for grain is estimated at 6.60 million acres, off planted acres of 8.1 million acres. This would be 81% of the planted acres, below the 10-year average of 93% harvested.

Day 2 will find the scouts loading up and traveling south to the southwestern corner of the state- with the car that will include Schoenhals heading into the Oklahoma Panhandle and then eastward along the top line of counties before sliding back into Kansas to join the report session in Wichita Wednesday night. Almost the entire journey on Wednesday will be in territory that has been or is still in exceptional drought- based on the Drought Monitor.

It’s likely to give us a solid idea of whether the 191 million bushel wheat crop prediction for Kansas by USDA last week is a real possibility of being true or not. If it is- it will be the first time since 1963 that Kansas has had a HRW crop under 200 million bushels.

You can read the Day One Kansas Wheat summary of the 2023 Wheat Crop Tour by clicking here.

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