Kansas farmers wrapping up this year’s wheat harvest probably don’t need another government report to tell them this isn’t a good year. But the latest forecast released by the Agriculture Department shows the toll from a widespread drought.
The National Agricultural Statistics Service on Friday reduced its estimate of the Kansas wheat crop to 235.2 million bushels.
That is down 26 percent from last year and would be the smallest crop since 1989. Average yields were 28 bushels an acre.
Growers are harvesting 8.4 million acres after abandoning about 900,000 planted acres.
Rains that plagued the state’s harvest came too late to help most of its drought-stricken wheat.
The agency estimated the nation will harvest 1.37 billion bushels of wheat nationwide, down 11 percent from a year ago.