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US winter wheat harvest reaches 30% in the latest week, spring wheat ratings unchanged

New Delhi — US winter wheat harvest for the 2019-20 crop (June-May) reached 30% in the week ended June 30, down 20 percentage points from the same period a year earlier, latest data from the US Department of Agriculture showed.

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Kansas, the largest winter wheat-producing state, struggled with heavy rains and flooding in May and early June, a period crucial for wheat harvesting conditions, according to weather analysts. As a result, the pace of winter wheat harvest in the state was off to a very slow start. Harvesting in the state began June 20.

In the latest week, Kansas winter wheat harvest reached 28%, down from 68% in the past year and below the five-year average of 61%, according to the USDA data released Monday.

However, winter wheat harvest in the state has now picked up in the last five or six days following suitable dry conditions, according to the harvest report released by the Kansas Wheat Commission.

A total of 63% of winter wheat crop in the US was rated in good and excellent conditions, improving 2 percentage points from the past week, USDA said. Analysts estimate for winter wheat conditions were in the range of 60%-63%.

Winter wheat is headed at 97% in the key states, up from 94% in the past week, but below the five-year average of 100%, USDA said. Heading occurs when the head of the wheat plant fully emerges from the stem.

The most active-traded CBOT wheat contract rose 0.9% from the last close, reaching a high of $5.15 a bushel on July 2.

SPRING WHEAT

Spring wheat crop conditions did not change from the last week, with 75% of the crop reported to be in good to excellent conditions, matching the trade expectations.

Crop development struggled due to lack of rains in Montana and western North Dakota, U.S. Wheat Associates said.

Spring wheat is headed at 25%, up 18 percentage points from the past week, but 30 points down from the same period last year.

-- Rohan Somwanshi, rohan.somwanshi@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Debiprasad Nayak, newsdesk@spglobal.com