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Information @ a Glance

General

  • Wheat (Triticum spp.) is a worldwide cultivated grass from the Levant area of the Middle East.
  • After maize, wheat is the second most produced food among the cereal crops.
  • Wheat originated in Southwest Asia in the area known as the Fertile crescent.
  • Wheat genetics is more complicated than that of most other domesticated species.

Production

  • Wheat production is about 70 million tonnes per year in India and counts for approximately 12 per cent of world production.
  • India’s wheat production increase is driven principally by yield growth and by shift in production from other crops to wheat and an increase in cropping intensity.
  • Annual global wheat consumption is in excess of 550 million tonnes (20 billion bushels). Farmers of the world produce almost 20 times as much wheat as is produced in Canada to satisfy this growing appetite.
  • Approximately two-thirds of the wheat produced in the world is used for human food and about one-sixth is used for livestock feed.
  • World production of wheat hovers around 585 million tons. Maximum contribution comes from European Union.

Cultivation

  • Cultivation of wheat is thought to have originated in the Euphrates Valley as early as 10,000 B.C., making it one of the world's oldest cereal crops.
  • Cultivation and repeated harvesting and sowing of the grains of wild grasses led to the domestication of wheat through selection of mutant forms with tough ears.
  • Planting of winter wheat usually occurs in September or early October when the soil has sufficient moisture to germinate the seed.
  • The winter wheat plant resumes its growth in the spring.

Uses

  • Foods made with wheat are a major part of the diet for over a third of the world's people.
  • Wheat is used in the manufacture of whiskey and beer, and the grain, the bran (the residue from milling), and the vegetative plant parts make valuable livestock feed.
  • Before the introduction of corn into Europe, wheat was the principal source of starch for sizing paper and cloth.

Market

  • India is now the second largest producer of wheat in the world.
  • The global wheat production was 602 million tonnes on account of drought in Australia and erratic climate in Europe.
  • There are many factors that influence the pattern of wheat consumption in the world. The most important of these include: Price, Supply, Consumer income, Availability of substitutes, and Politics.
  • Major wheat growing countries include China, India, France, and Russia. Major wheat growing states in India are Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Bihar.
  • Export market of wheat is getting competitive with the entry of India into it.

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