7 Countries That Grow the Most Wheat in the World
Wheat is one of the most important cereal crops in the world, providing food for billions of people and feed for livestock. Wheat is also used to make products such as flour, bread, pasta, pastry, cookies, crackers, and more. But which countries produce the most wheat in the world? In this article, we will look at the top seven wheat-producing countries based on their total yield in tonnes from 2000 to 2020.
China: The Largest Wheat Producer
China is the world’s largest wheat producer, accounting for about 17% of the global wheat production from 2000 to 2020. China has produced more than 2.4 billion tonnes of wheat in the last two decades, mainly for domestic consumption. China is also the world’s largest consumer of wheat, using about 19% of the global wheat supply in 2020/2021. China grows wheat in various regions, but the main wheat-producing areas are the North China Plain, the Huang-Huai-Hai Plain, and the Sichuan Basin.
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India: The Second-Largest Wheat Producer
India is the second-largest wheat producer in the world, producing more than 107 million tonnes of wheat in 2020. India has increased its wheat production significantly in the last two decades, thanks to improved varieties, irrigation, fertilization, and pest management. India grows wheat mainly in the northern and central parts of the country, especially in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan. India is also a major exporter of wheat, mainly to neighboring countries such as Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
Russia: The Largest Wheat Exporter
Russia is the third-largest wheat producer in the world, producing more than 85 million tonnes of wheat in 2020. Russia has also become the largest wheat exporter in the world, surpassing the United States and the European Union in recent years. Russia exported more than $7.3 billion worth of wheat in 2021, mainly to countries such as Egypt, Turkey, Bangladesh, and Vietnam. Russia grows wheat mostly in the southern and western regions of the country, where the climate is favorable for winter and spring wheat.
United States: The Fourth-Largest Wheat Producer
The United States is the fourth-largest wheat producer in the world, producing about 49 million tonnes of wheat in 2020. The United States is also one of the top wheat exporters in the world, exporting about $6 billion worth of wheat in 2021. The United States grows wheat in various states, but the main wheat-producing regions are the Great Plains, the Pacific Northwest, and California. The United States produces different types of wheat, such as hard red winter, hard red spring, soft red winter, soft white, and durum.
Canada: The Fifth-Largest Wheat Producer
Canada is the fifth-largest wheat producer in the world, producing about 35 million tonnes of wheat in 2020. Canada is also a major wheat exporter in the world, exporting about $5 billion worth of wheat in 2021. Canada grows wheat mainly in the western provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, where the climate is suitable for spring and winter wheat. Canada produces high-quality wheat varieties such as hard red spring, soft white spring, durum, and Canada Prairie Spring.
France: The Sixth-Largest Wheat Producer
France is the sixth-largest wheat producer in the world, producing about 30 million tonnes of wheat in 2020. France is also a significant wheat exporter in the world, exporting about $4 billion worth of wheat in 2021. France grows wheat mainly in the northern and central regions of the country, where the soil and climate are ideal for winter and spring wheat. France produces high-quality bread-making wheat varieties such as soft red winter and hard red winter.
Pakistan: The Seventh-Largest Wheat Producer
Pakistan is the seventh-largest wheat producer in the world, producing about 25 million tonnes of wheat in 2020. Pakistan is also a large consumer of wheat, using about 13% of the global wheat supply in 2020/2021. Pakistan grows wheat mostly in the Punjab and Sindh provinces, where irrigation and fertilization are widely used. Pakistan produces mainly bread-making wheat varieties such as hard red winter and hard white winter.
Wheat is a vital crop for food security and economic development around the world. The top seven countries that produce the most wheat are China, India, Russia, United States, Canada, France, and Pakistan. These countries account for more than half of the global wheat production and trade.
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Wheat Production Trends in the World
Wheat is one of the most important cereal crops in the world, providing food and income for millions of people. Wheat is also a major commodity in the global trade, with significant impacts on the economy and food security of many countries. In this blog post, we will explore some of the trends and challenges of wheat production in the world, based on data from various sources.
Top Wheat Producing Countries
- China — 134,254,710 tons
- India — 107,590,000 tons
- Russia — 85,896,326 tons
- United States — 49,690,680 tons
- Canada — 35,183,000 tons
- France — 30,144,110 tons
- Pakistan — 25,247,511 tons
- Ukraine — 24,912,350 tons
- Germany — 22,172,100 tons
- Turkey — 20,500,000 tons
These 10 countries accounted for about 64% of the world’s total wheat production. China was the largest wheat producer and consumer in the world, followed by India and Russia. The European Union (EU), if counted as a single country, would rank second in wheat production with 126,658,950 tons .
Wheat Production Challenges
Wheat production faces many challenges in the world, such as climate change, pests and diseases, water scarcity, soil degradation, and market volatility. Some of the recent events that have affected wheat production are:
- The COVID-19 pandemic, which disrupted the supply chains and trade flows of wheat and other agricultural products, as well as increased the food insecurity and poverty of many people .
- The Russia-Ukraine war, which started in 2022 and caused massive disruptions to the global wheat market and adjacent industries. Russia and Ukraine together accounted for nearly 30% of the global wheat trade . Russia also imposed export taxes and quotas on wheat to protect its domestic market .
- The droughts and heat waves that affected many wheat producing regions in 2021 and 2022, such as North America, Europe, Australia, and Central Asia. These extreme weather events reduced the yield and quality of wheat crops and increased the risk of wildfires .
Wheat Production Outlook
Despite the challenges, wheat production is expected to increase in the future to meet the growing demand from the rising population and income levels. According to the FAO’s projections , global wheat production will reach 837 million tons by 2030 and 917 million tons by 2050. The main drivers of this growth will be:
- The expansion of wheat area and yield in developing countries, especially in Africa and Asia.
- The adoption of improved varieties and technologies that enhance the resilience and productivity of wheat crops.
- The diversification of wheat products and uses that cater to different consumer preferences and needs.
However, to achieve this growth sustainably, wheat production will need to address the challenges mentioned above and adopt more efficient and environmentally friendly practices that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, water use, land degradation, and waste.
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