Many wheat growers believed this year’s crop had a lot of potential prior to harvest. However, the most recent Illinois yield estimate released Monday by USDA’s National Ag Statistics Office in Springfield, Illinois, still caught some off guard. This year’s average in Illinois – 80 bushels per acre – blew past the 2017 record by four bushels.
The new state record yield also topped last year’s average by a whopping 12 bushels per acre. Heavy rains and strong winds threatened wheat stands in parts of the state in recent weeks and caused some issues. But many farmers were able to get the crop out in time to avoid major losses.
Overall, USDA pegged winter wheat production at 52 million bushels in Illinois, up 47 percent from last year, and 1.36 billion bushels nationwide, up four percent from the June estimate, with a national average yield of 53.6 bushels per acre, up 2.7 bushels from 2020.