Johannesburg - Wheat in South Africa dropped to the lowest level in almost nine months after a survey yesterday showed that the nation will probably increase the area planted with the grain.

White and yellow corn increased.

Wheat for delivery in December fell 0.5 percent to 3,499 rand a metric ton, the lowest for a most-active contract since October 31, by the noon close on the South African Futures Exchange.

Local farmers may plant 505,250 hectares (1.25 million acres) with wheat according to a median prediction of four analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

That compares with the 500,500 hectares forecast by South Africa’s Crop Estimates Committee on April 24.

The committee will release its data on July 29.

While the country is sub-Saharan Africa’s largest producers of the grain, it’s still a net importer of wheat, according to US Department of Agriculture data.

White corn for delivery in December gained 1 percent to 1,774 rand a ton.

The yellow variety for delivery in the same month rose 1.3 percent to 1,861 rand. - Bloomberg News