October 26, 2023
By Nov. 1, nearly 94% of the world’s 2023 wheat will have been harvested. The Argentine and Australian wheat harvest will be finished in late December. This implies that, for all practical purposes, the 2023/24 wheat marketing year export wheat supply is known, and that additional 2023 wheat production may have limited impact prices.
After Argentina and Australia complete their 2023 harvests, the next major exporting country to harvest wheat will be the U.S. with its winter wheat crop. When the U.S. winter wheat harvest starts, about 25% of the world’s 2024 wheat crop will have been harvested.
The 2024/25 world wheat harvest will start with India’s harvest beginning in March 2024. Pakistan, North Africa and the Middle Eastern wheat harvests start in April. By June 1, about 25% of the 2024 wheat will have been harvested but very little of this wheat will enter the export market.
This information is valuable because the supply of exportable wheat between now and June 1, 2024, is known with a relatively high probability. There is, however, one situation that can change the 2024 export wheat supply situation and price between now and June 1. That market factor is the potential size of the 2024 U.S. winter wheat crop.
At this writing, wheat may be forward contracted for harvest delivery in Pond Creek, Oklahoma for $6.18 (KEN24 price - $0.70). The Perryton, Texas harvest forward contact price is $6.33 (KEN24 - $0.55). The Altus, Oklahoma 2024 wheat harvest price is $5.93 (KEN24 - $0.95).
The average Pond Creek June through August price from 2009 through 2023 is $5.86. The low price was $3.24 in 2016, and the high price was $8.85 in 2022. The current forward contract price in Pond Creek is $0.33 above the average price for the years 2009 through 2023.
Given that during the 2009 through 2023 harvests, the average wheat harvest price range was a plus or minus $2.60 or more, $0.33 is not very much.
The October WASDE (World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates) projects that the 2023/24 world wheat ending stocks-to-use ratio (ending stocks divided by consumption) will be 32.6%. The 10-year average is 35.2% and the five-year average is 36.5%. This implies that world wheat stocks are relatively tight.
The 2023/24 U.S. wheat stocks-to-use ratio is projected to be 32.6% compared to a 10-year average of 35.2%. The U.S. hard red winter (HRW) wheat stocks-to-use ratio is projected to be 48% compared to a 10-year average of 54% and 35% for 2022/23.
The projected 2023/24 wheat marketing year stocks-to-use ratios imply that the 2024 Oklahoma and Texas wheat harvest prices should be above the 2009 through 2023 average harvest prices. Pond Creek, Oklahoma 2024 average wheat harvest should average above $5.86.
The above analysis focuses on three factors: The 2023 wheat harvest is complete for the major wheat-exporting countries. The world and U.S. wheat stocks are relatively tight. And, an above-average 2024 wheat harvest forward contract price makes the 2024 wheat price outlook semi-positive.
Troubling factors are the 48% (54% average) HRW wheat stocks-to-use ratio and the massive about of wheat Russia has to export. Without these two factors, and maybe even with them, the Oklahoma and Texas wheat prices could be predicted to be in the upper $6 to $7 range.
I am cautiously optimistic. The fact that the exportable supply is mostly fixed between now and the Oklahoma and Texas wheat harvest and relatively tight wheat stocks supports this optimism.
About the Author(s)
You May Also Like
Current Conditions for
Enter a zip code to see the weather conditions for a different location.
Cornstalk grazing 101Dec 05, 2023
A man and his champion tractorDec 06, 2023
Check all options before investing in robotic milkersDec 05, 2023