The Deepening Drought and World Food Supplies

We continue to be in a deepening drought in the central Great Plains and over much of the western half of the nation. 

Here is the latest Palmer Drought Index as of February 24, the latest available. 

In most of this area, rain will be less than normal the next seven days.

Beyond the next week is the 8-14 day outlook from the National Weather Service. 
Recent extended rainfall forecasts from the NWS have tended to be a bit optimistic. But, assuming this is correct, it shows normal or below normal precipitation in the winter wheat belt. The crop badly needs precipitation at this point and I don't see it coming in sufficient amounts.

Above is the price of May, 2022, wheat futures. Russia and Ukraine are major producers of wheat. Clearly, the Ukraine's crop is going to be affected by the war. Some are calling for a boycott of Russian agricultural products. Wheat futures have gone through the roof the past week. It is within the realm of possibility that there will be bread shortages if the drought continues in the United States. At minimum, prices are going to continue to rise -- significantly. 


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