State wheat crop forecast even with 2009

The state's wheat crop is forecast at 369 million bushels as of July 1, almost exactly the same as the 2009 crop — thanks to what is expected to be the highest yield in eight years, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Expectations were low for this year's crop because heavy fall rains kept Kansas farmers from planting more than 8.2 million acres, down 600,000 acres from a year ago. But good growing weather boosted yields to 45 bushels per acre statewide, up three bushels from last year.

The winter wheat crop nationally is forecast to be down about 1 percent from 2009 at 1.51 billion bushels.