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Wheat Exports & Production
by Lacy Gray, click here for bio
Program: Washington Ag Today
Date: May 17, 12
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Washington wheat growers joined other U.S. wheat farmers in welcoming the implementation of the U.S. - Columbia Free Trade Agreement on May 15, which signaled the elimination of all tariffs on U.S. wheat imports into Columbia. Now U.S. wheat farmers can compete on an equal foot hold with Canada and Argentina who already had duty-free access to the Colombia market. Currently Columbia is the second largest destination for U.S. wheat in South America. Colfax wheat farmer Randy Suess says this agreement will help us rebuild and expand markets, and grow our economy here at home as well as remain the most reliable supplier of wheat in the world. Suess tells why the FTAs with Colombia, South Korea and Panama are so important to Washington wheat growers.
SUESS: We export ninety percent of our wheat, and the rest of the country only has to find a home for fifty percent of it so we’re a little bit in that way a little unique.
Washington’s 2012 winter wheat production is forecast to reach 115.2 million bushels, with yields expected to average 69 bushels per acre. It’s estimated growers will harvest 1.67 million acres this summer, 60 thousand acres less than last year. Slightly cooler early May temperatures had the maturity of the crop slightly behind normal, but David Knopf, Director of NASS’ Washington Field Office says the crop looks good with abundant soil moisture present.
I’m Lacy Gray and that’s Washington Ag Today on the Northwest Ag Information Network.
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