TABLE-U.S. Plains wheat ratings decline in Kansas, mixed elsewhere- USDA

By Julie Ingwersen CHICAGO, Feb 22 (Reuters) - Condition ratings for winter wheat declined during February in Kansas, the top U.S. winter wheat producer, but monthly ratings were mixed in other Plains states, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Monday. The United States is the world's second-largest wheat exporter after Russia. The USDA issued its last national winter wheat ratings for 2020 on Nov. 30, reporting 46% of the U.S. crop in good to excellent condition as of Nov. 29. Over the winter, USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service releases monthly reports for select states. The government will resume weekly U.S. crop progress reports in April. The USDA rated 40% of the Kansas winter wheat crop in good to excellent condition as of Feb. 21, down from 43% a month earlier. A year ago, 35% of the Kansas crop was rated good to excellent. Winter wheat ratings also declined in Oklahoma, but improved in South Dakota, Colorado and Montana. Farmers in the Plains grow mostly hard red winter wheat, the largest U.S. wheat class, which is milled into flour for bread. In Texas, winter storms in the last week brought beneficial moisture to wheat in some areas but producers were assessing crop damage, the USDA's state report said. Texas, the No. 3 U.S. citrus state, faces citrus crop losses of at least $300 million due to the weather, Governor Greg Abbott said last week. Wheat condition ratings declined during the last month in Illinois, Kentucky and North Carolina, where farmers grow soft red winter wheat used to make cookies and snack foods. Very Poor Fair Good Excellent Good/ Poor Excellent Colorado Feb. 22 15 14 52 17 2 19 Jan. 25 18 18 47 16 1 17 Year-ago 5 8 28 58 1 59 Illinois Feb. 22 1 2 51 40 6 46 Jan. 25 4 7 24 54 11 65 Year-ago 2 6 36 46 10 56 Kansas Feb. 22 8 18 34 37 3 40 Jan. 25 7 17 33 40 3 43 Year-ago 6 14 45 33 2 35 Kentucky Feb. 22 1 3 24 65 7 72 Jan. 25 0 1 13 71 15 86 Year-ago 1 2 11 63 23 86 Montana Feb. 22 2 9 20 61 8 69 Jan. 25 1 4 27 62 6 68 Year-ago 0 23 40 25 12 37 Nebraska Feb. 22 9 13 44 33 1 34 Jan. 25 6 12 48 33 1 34 Year-ago 1 4 26 65 4 69 N. Carolina Feb. 22 5 19 44 28 4 32 Jan. 25 1 9 43 45 2 47 Year-ago 1 5 25 62 7 69 North Dakota Feb. 22 9 24 51 15 1 16 Jan. 25 7 12 60 20 1 21 Year-ago 0 1 16 75 8 83 Oklahoma Feb. 22 5 9 38 47 1 48 Jan. 25 1 4 34 58 3 61 Year-ago 5 12 37 45 1 46 South Dakota Feb. 22 1 15 43 41 0 41 Jan. 25 3 18 47 32 0 32 Year-ago 0 2 25 71 2 73 Texas Feb. 22 12 19 39 23 7 30 Jan. 25 12 29 39 20 9 29 Last week 9 18 40 26 7 33 Year-ago 6 23 40 24 7 31 (Reporting by Julie Ingwersen; editing by Uttaresh.V)

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