By George Mwangi

Special to Dow Jones Newswires


NAIROBI--Kenya's wheat production is forecast to rise by 13% in the marketing year beginning July through June 2024, the U.S. Agriculture Department said late Tuesday.

Production is estimated to rise to 310,000 metric tons from 275,000 tons in the current marketing year, the USDA said in its annual Kenya grain and feed report.

In 2023-24, production is forecast to rise due to increases in area harvested as new farmers lease land to plant wheat to take advantage of the high prevailing prices, it said.

In February 2023, wheat prices stood at $462 a ton compared to $417 a ton during the same month in 2022, it said.

Wheat production will be less affected by high fertilizer prices as wheat farmers tend to be larger scale and better positioned to absorb high input prices than most corn producers, it said.

In general, Kenya's wheat yields face challenges due to short-term land leases that dis-incentivize investment in soil and equipment, it said.

Production is also negatively affected by seed recycling and occasional outbreaks of wheat stem rust disease, it said.

In 2023-24, wheat imports are forecast to remain unchanged at 1.6 million tons as in the current marketing year, it said.

In the current marketing year, wheat imports will fall roughly 10% from the previous year due to high prices, disruptions associated with the Ukraine crisis, and Kenya's deteriorating exchange rate, the USDA said.


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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

March 23, 2023 07:55 ET (11:55 GMT)

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