CHARLESTON — Even as more hay has been used over the last 5 months, hay stocks have risen on West Virginia farms.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that on-farm hay stocks in the state totaled 145,000 tons as of May 1, which is 50,000 tons more than what was on hand last May 1.

The USDA said the “disappearance” of all hay stocks on farms from Dec. 1 to May 1 was 625,000 tons. That’s up 11% from the same period a year earlier when 565,000 tons disappeared.

Across the United States, winter wheat production is forecast at 1.28 billion bushels, up 10 percent from 2020. As of May 1, the U.S. yield is forecast at 52.1 bushels per acre, up 1.2 bushels from last year’s average yield of 50.9 bushels per acre.

Area expected to be harvested for grain is forecast at 24.6 million acres, up 7% from last year.

All on-farm hay stocks stored on U.S. farms as of May 1 totaled 18.0 million tons, down 12 percent from 2020. Disappearance from Dec. 1 to May 1 totaled 66.0 million tons, up 3 percent from the same period a year earlier.

Record low May 1 hay stock levels were estimated in New Hampshire and Rhode Island.

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