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Documentation

Scope

This data product contains statistics on wheat-including the five classes of wheat: hard red winter, hard red spring, soft red winter, white, and durum-and rye. Included are data published in the monthly Wheat Outlookand previous editions of the annual Wheat Yearbook. Descriptive information about the five classes of wheat and U.S. wheat production and use is available in the Background chapter of the Wheat topic.

Marketing Years

The local marketing year for U.S. wheat and rye is June 1-May 31. Marketing years may be written to include both calendar years. For example, 2005/06 refers to the marketing year beginning June 1, 2005 and ending May 31, 2006. Data for U.S. production, supply and disappearance, food use, stocks, prices, imports, and exports are on a marketing-year basis. Data for flour production, supply, disappearance, and prices are on a calendar-year basis.

The international trade year for wheat is July 1-June 30. July 1 approximates the wheat harvest in many Northern Hemisphere countries. USDA estimates wheat imports and exports for all countries in the Production, Supply, and Distribution (PS&D) database on both a country's local marketing year and the international trade year. Putting all countries on the same 12-month year facilitates analysis of competition and market share. For some countries, like Canada and the European Union, the local marketing year and trade year are the same. However, countries in the Southern Hemisphere have a local marketing year that is quite different from the international trade year.

Sources

Most of the data are from USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service, World Agricultural Outlook Board, Agricultural Marketing Service, Farm Service Agency, and Foreign Agricultural Service. Other data are from the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau. Some data are calculated by ERS.

Updates

Most data are updated monthly or quarterly. Some data are updated only annually.

Conversion Factors

Several units of measure are used in this data product. Here are a few useful conversion factors:

  • 1 bushel of wheat = 60 pounds or 77.2 kilograms/hectoliter
  • 1 metric ton = 2,204.622 pounds
  • Bushels x 0.0272155 = metric tons
  • Metric tons x 36.7437 = bushels
  • Price per bushel x 36.7437 = price per metric ton
  • Price per metric ton x 0.0272155 = price per bushel
  • 1 acre = 0.4047 hectares
  • 1 hectare = 2.4710 acres
  • Bushels/acre x 0.06725 = metric tons/hectare
  • Metric tons/hectare x 14.87 = bushels/acre

Supply and Disappearance Data

Estimating the supply and disappearance of U.S. wheat is a joint effort of several agencies of USDA's Wheat Interagency Commodity Estimates Committee (ICEC). Through the wheat ICEC, USDA estimates supply and use variables for each of the five U.S. classes of wheat. These estimates are published monthly in World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE), and changes in the estimates from month-to-month are explained in ERS' monthly Wheat Outlook. For more information, see USDA Outlook Process and Estimating Wheat Supply and Use.

Food Use Data

Domestic food use of wheat must be estimated indirectly because no data are collected on actual consumption of wheat in the United States. Estimates are made on a monthly basis. The estimate is the sum of wheat milled for flour, net imports (imports minus exports) of flour and wheat products (only wheat products used for food, products used for feed are excluded), and nonflour wheat use (grain processed in some way other than milling).

Monthly estimates of all wheat and durum grain milled and flour and millfeed produced are calculated by ERS using quarterly data from the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau. Monthly ERS food import and export estimates are a subset of the monthly wheat import and export estimates made by ERS using monthly trade data from the Census Bureau. The Census flour and wheat product trade data are converted to ERS estimates of grain-equivalent bushels of wheat. The estimate for nonflour wheat use is made by ERS. See Estimating Domestic Food Use in the Wheat topic for more information.

Price Data

Farm Prices

Annual season-average price for all wheat, rye, and each of the five classes of wheat is based on monthly prices received by farmers weighted by monthly marketings. These prices are from USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service.

The season-average price for all wheat for the current marketing year is published in World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates as a projected price range.

Market Prices

The monthly, cash-bid prices for various classes and grades of wheat at principal U.S. wheat markets are from USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service. The monthly market prices for Canada, Australia, and the Netherlands (Rotterdam) are calculated by ERS from weekly prices from the International Grains Council'sGrain Market Report. The monthly prices for Argentina are from Republica Argentina, Secretaria de Agricultura, Ganaderia, Pesca y Alimentos (SAGPyA).

Import and Export Data

Data Discrepancies (July 18, 2008): Durum exports shown in Yearbook Table 22 are those reported by the U.S. Census Bureau and differ from current USDA annual and quarterly estimates for the same periods. Current USDA estimates reflect unresolved discrepancies between Census Bureau data and data collected by USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service under the export sales reporting system.

Monthly ERS wheat and wheat product import and export estimates are made by ERS using monthly trade data from the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau. These monthly import and export estimates include both food and feed traded items. See Estimating Wheat Trade in the Wheat topic for more information.

Flour Data

Estimates of flour supply and disappearance for all wheat and durum are made by ERS using quarterly flour production data and monthly trade data for wheat products (including flour) from the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau. See Estimating Domestic Food Use in the Wheat topic for more information. Per capita estimates of wheat flour disappearance (pounds of flour/person) are made using population data from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. The population series used is a calendar-year average of monthly estimates of residents plus Armed Forces overseas.

Wheat grain, flour, and byproduct prices and average flour extraction rates at Kansas City and Minneapolis are used to estimate quarterly and marketing year profitability in these two milling centers. The wheat milled in Kansas City is No. 1 hard red winter, 13-percent protein and the flour produced is bakers standard patent. The wheat milled in Minneapolis is No. 1 dark northern spring, 14-percent protein and the flour produced is spring standard patent. The byproducts are middlings and bran. Monthly cash-bid grain prices and mid-month wholesale prices for the byproducts are from USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service. The mid-month flour wholesale prices are from Sosland Publishing Company'sMilling and Baking NewsMarket Fax.

Last updated: Thursday, July 05, 2012

For more information contact: Gary Vocke, Edward Allen, and Olga Liefert