Touch the Soil News #1791 (Feature Photo Wheat – CCA SA 3.0 Unported, Bluemoose)
The nation of Ukraine, has always been a large exporter of wheat, to nations unable to produce their own. The Ukraine normally plants 16.5 million acres. That equates to a farm that is 10 miles wide and almost 2,600 miles long. A farm this size could potentially produce about 60 billion pounds of wheat, 40 percent of which the Ukrainians need, and 60 percent of what other nations who import it need. For perspective, the U.S. plants about 45 million acres of wheat each year.
Farmers around the world will attempt to make up the shortfall, but finding acres to plant more wheat, often comes at the cost of reducing acres in other major crops. This means production in other major crops may suffer. The potential wheat shortage in the Ukraine, has another more impacting affect than just less pounds of wheat available. There can be a domino effect on prices of all other crops which loose acres to make up the wheat shortfall.
For American farmers, there may be monetary rewards to farmers, who will be challenged to make up the shortfall, with higher price incentives. Economic spending at the level of the farm, is one of the most powerful drivers of national economic prosperity, as dollars at this level of spending, are very efficient at circulating through the economy.