Virginia winter wheat crop expected to decline

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia agriculture officials say this year’s winter wheat crop is expected to be smaller than last year’s crop.

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said Monday that growers are expected to produce 15.9 million bushels this year. That’s a 7 percent decline from 2013’s crop.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service says winter wheat production nationwide is expected to drop 9 percent to 1.4 billion bushels.

Virginia’s winter wheat average yield also is expected to decline. Yield is projected to be 60 bushels, down two bushels from 2013.

The predictions are based on conditions on May 1.

Hay stocks as of May 1 totaled 470,000 tons, up 15 percent from 2013.

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