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Ag Department: Winter wheat production down sharply in the Dakotas from 2014 but up nationally

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SIOUX FALLS, South Dakota — This year's winter wheat crop in the Dakotas is expected to be quite a bit smaller than last year's.

The Agriculture Department estimates South Dakota's crop at 48.4 million bushels, down 19 percent from 2014. North Dakota's crop is pegged at 11.2 million bushels, down 59 percent.

Winter wheat is not a main crop in North Dakota, making it subject to larger swings in production. Acres for harvest in North Dakota are estimated to be down 60 percent from last year.

In South Dakota, they're estimated to be up 2 percent over the year. The production drop is due to a 20 percent drop in average yield.

Nationally, winter wheat production is forecast at 1.5 billion bushels, up 7 percent from 2014.

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