Tag Archives: wheat

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring is cautioning North Dakota farmers about the possibility of people impersonating state employees in order to take photos and samples of grain.

Goehring says his office has had calls from farmers about people supposedly acting in an official capacity and taking photos and samples of wheat fields.

He says no state government agency or North Dakota State University has authorized any such work. And he says anyone working for the state should be able to provide proper credentials and the reason for their visit.

Goehring encourages farmers who encounter suspicious activity to alert the authorities.

PORTLAND, Ore.  — Seven ships loaded with wheat grown in America’s Pacific Northwest are sailing for Yemen, where a stalemated civil war has pushed more than 8 million people to the brink of starvation.

The U.S. Agency for International Development, which administers the Food for Peace program, purchased the wheat to benefit America’s wheat farmers and people in crisis. It was then handed over to the U.N.’s World Food Program to be shipped and distributed in Yemen.

Stephen Anderson, the WFP’s Yemen country director, told a Friday news conference in Portland that the wheat will provide much-needed relief.

“We’re doing our best to get food assistance to those people who need it most,” Anderson said, according to the Capital Press, an agricultural publication.

Over the past two weeks, seven ships filled with 176,000 tons (159,665 metric tons) of wheat have left Portland for Yemen, two Oregon politicians said.

Democratic U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley and Republican state Rep. Mike McLane said in a joint statement they’re proud to see Oregon wheat being used in one of America’s “most effective peacebuilding tools,” its Food for Peace program.

“We see these agricultural programs representing the best of American values, culture and policy,” Merkley and McLane said in their statement published in The Oregonian/OregonLive.

Darren Padget, a wheat farmer from Grass Valley, Oregon, told the Capital Press he’s pleased the wheat is going to the needy.

Aid workers in Yemen are worried that fighting that is nearing a port where most food aid arrives could force its shutdown and potentially tip millions into starvation. WFP Executive Director David Beasley has called Hodeida Port “a humanitarian lifeline for millions who are on the brink of famine.”

Yemeni government forces, backed by a Saudi-led coalition, have been trying to retake Hodeida as they battle Iran-allied rebels known as Houthis.

The Houthis seized control of Sanaa, Yemen’s capital, in September 2014, and later pushed south toward the port city of Aden. The Saudi-led coalition entered the conflict in March 2015 and has faced criticism for a campaign of airstrikes that has killed civilians and destroyed hospitals and markets.

The Houthis have laid land mines, killing and wounding civilians. They also have targeted religious minorities and imprisoned opponents. The stalemate war has killed more than 10,000 people.

Around two-thirds of the country’s population of 27 million relies on aid and 8.4 million are at risk of starving.

David Ostdiek – Communications Specialist, UNL Panhandle REC

A multi-disciplinary team of University of Nebraska-Lincoln researchers will conduct a two-year study to see how soil nitrogen levels affect protein levels in the grain that comes from Nebraska wheat fields.

The team hopes to evaluate how grain quality, yield, and field stands are affected by nitrogen fertilizer rates and application timing. The trials will be conducted across the state and with variations in the amount of precipitation the plots receive.

The project also will test the effectiveness of crop sensors in monitoring wheat crop conditions and whether inputs are needed during the growing season.

Lead principal investigator is Bijesh Maharjan, soil and nutrient management specialist at the UNL Panhandle Research and Extension Center in Scottsbluff. Co-investigators are several of Maharjan’s colleagues at the Panhandle Center: Dryland Cropping Systems Specialist Cody Creech, and Alternative Crops Breeding Specialist Dipak Santra. Investigators based in Lincoln or elsewhere in eastern Nebraska include Wheat Breeding Specialist Stephen Baenziger; Research Assistant Professor Teshome Regassa; Devin Rose, Associate Professor in Food Science and Technology in the UNL Food Innovation Center; Yeyin Shi, Assistant Professor in Biological Systems Engineering and Agricultural Information Systems Specialist; and Extension Educator Nathan Mueller.

Research plots will be located at Scottsbluff, Sidney, Grant, and Mead.

The project is funded by grants from the Nebraska Wheat Board (for the coming year) and the University of Nebraska Agricultural Research Division (ARD) Innovation Fund for Wheat/Cereal Crops (for the next two years).

One reason for the study is Nebraska wheat crop yield data from 2016 and 2017, which revealed low protein levels in both years.

Wheat growers receive lower prices when grain protein levels fall below certain levels. According to the project proposal, low protein levels cost Nebraska producers somewhere between $2.3 million and $9.6 million dollars in 2016 alone, despite high yields, based on reports from elevator personnel and Wheat Board members.

Among many potential factors, soil nitrogen is probably the most important factor that affects protein levels in wheat, Maharjan said. With low grain prices, farmers are under pressure to lower input costs, including nitrogen fertilizer.

“Reducing or eliminating nitrogen applications to winter wheat will typically result in low protein when yields are high and/or residual soil nitrogen is low.”

In addition, abundant fall and spring precipitation during both growing seasons increased the plants’ tillering and grain yields, but may have moved soil nitrogen deeper into the soil profile, where the crop’s roots cannot reach it.

“In order to increase protein levels in wheat, N must be properly managed in the soil and be available for plant uptake during grain development,” the project proposal stated. “The interacting effect of N with available soil moisture becomes a contingent issue for a profitable winter wheat production.”

Predicting how much nitrogen a wheat crop will need requires an extensive data set, and UNL’s formula for predicting wheat’s nitrogen requirement was developed in the 1970s. The formula is due to be updated, based on changes in wheat variety traits and management, as well as changing climatic conditions, Maharjan said.

At the same time, crop-sensing technology has been used with success in predicting nitrogen requirements for another of the state’s important crops, corn. Research established a strong relationship between total chlorophyll content in a corn canopy and the crop’s nitrogen status. This project will explore whether crop sensing technology can potentially benefit wheat management.

The research project will also look at other nutrients, specifically links between nitrogen and sulfur rates. Sulfur deficiency can adversely affect wheat.

Maharjan said the researchers hope the two-year project will not only answer questions about how factors such as fertilizer timing and precipitation affect grain protein levels, but also will show whether crop sensing can be used as a management tool for fertilizer management in wheat.

“Provided all goes well and we get good data, in two years we will understand a lot about management for optimum yield and protein,” he said, adding that precipitation variation also will be tracked at one of the sites, hopefully providing insight into how fertilizer management is related and can be adjusted to weather.

The grants will provide funding for a graduate student whose time will be dedicated completely to the protein project, Maharjan said. The student will start in the spring of 2019. The plots will be planted in September this year.

Food bloggers have been sharing their stories about their farm to food experience with their readers since returning home from the #Wheat2Bread tour last month.
Kansas Wheat teamed up with Red Star Yeast to bring nine food bloggers to Kansas during wheat harvest. With a combined reach of 5.4 million social media followers, these bloggers are sharing the farmers’ story with consumers across the United States.
“One thing became clear to me on this trip: I am very disconnected from where my food comes from,” wrote Kristin of  BakerBettie.com in Chicago, Illinois. “It is so easy to grab things at the grocery store and never consider how they truly came to be. I absolutely loved the experience of becoming more connected to the source of wheat, which is such a huge part of my life.”
The bloggers visited wheat harvest at Scott VanAllen’s farm in Sumner County on June 12. Each of them had the opportunity to ride in the combine with VanAllen and harvest wheat.
“As we stood in the field, blowing in the Kansas wind, it really hit me what an incredible source of life wheat is. We learned that 20% of all calories consumed in the world come from wheat. That is just insane to think about,” wrote Kristin. “And so I asked Scott what he wished the everyday consumer understood about his product. He responded,
‘I want people to know that I’m producing a safe product. I think there is a lot of fear around where our food comes from. But hopefully coming straight to the source you can see that we take pride in what we do and we want to produce food that is safe to eat, because our family eats it too.'”
Research has shown that consumers want to know more about their food, how it is produced and where it comes from. By inviting influencers such as food bloggers to the farm, Kansas farmers are able to share their story with a broader consumer audience.
Jessica of A-Kitchen-Addiction.com in Minneapolis, Minnesota, wrote, “I love learning more about where my food comes from. There is so much information out there from all different sides, so it is nice to go straight to the source and see it for myself.”
“I enjoyed our time with Scott, and I was impressed with his passion for farming and commitment to doing it right,” wrote Annalise of CompletelyDelicious.com in Salt Lake City, Utah. “And I loved learning the story behind all that flour I use in my baking!”
The #Wheat2Bread tour also had Jenny Goering, a farmer from McPherson County, accompany the food bloggers the duration of the trip. This allowed participants to always have a farmer on hand to ask questions of. Goering was able to share her experiences managing two farms, one conventional and one organic, and tell tales of her family’s harvest traditions.
Stefani of CupcakeProject.com in St. Louis, Missouri, loved the interactions she was able to have with Kansas wheat farmers.
“As someone whose livelihood is so closely tied to wheat, it was an honor to get to stand in wheat fields and meet the folks who bring the wheat to us,” she wrote.
Adriana from AdrianasBestRecipes.com in Orlando, Florida, encouraged her readers to ask farmers when they have questions about food.
“Many times I have shared the importance of getting to know where the food that we eat comes from,” wrote Adriana. “If you have the chance to meet a farmer, ask questions and learn the process. Nonetheless, the appreciation for food and the knowledge of what you and your family are consuming is safe and nutritious.”
One of her readers, “Erica,” commented, “I think it’s really interesting to learn about farming and food production.”
While in Kansas, the bloggers also visited Farmer Direct Foods in New Cambria and the Kansas Wheat Innovation Center in Manhattan. There, they had a hands-on baking experience where they got to complete the farm to food circle. Jill Ladd, a registered dietitian, was also on hand to talk about wheat’s nutritional value.
Other bloggers on the tour included Lori from TheKitchenWhisperer.net in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania; Abby from HeartofaBaker.com in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Sally from SallysBakingAddiction.com in Baltimore, Maryland; and Jamie from LoveBakesGoodCakes.com in Phoenix, Arizona.
This tour was just one of many ways wheat farmers are sharing their story with consumers. Visit eatwheat.org to learn more and to read each of the bloggers’ stories.
Food bloggers have been sharing their stories about their farm to food experience with their readers since returning home from the #Wheat2Bread tour last month.
Kansas Wheat teamed up with Red Star Yeast to bring nine food bloggers to Kansas during wheat harvest. With a combined reach of 5.4 million social media followers, these bloggers are sharing the farmers’ story with consumers across the United States.

 

“One thing became clear to me on this trip: I am very disconnected from where my food comes from,” wrote Kristin of  BakerBettie.com in Chicago, Illinois. “It is so easy to grab things at the grocery store and never consider how they truly came to be. I absolutely loved the experience of becoming more connected to the source of wheat, which is such a huge part of my life.”

 

The bloggers visited wheat harvest at Scott VanAllen’s farm in Sumner County on June 12. Each of them had the opportunity to ride in the combine with VanAllen and harvest wheat.

 

“As we stood in the field, blowing in the Kansas wind, it really hit me what an incredible source of life wheat is. We learned that 20% of all calories consumed in the world come from wheat. That is just insane to think about,” wrote Kristin. “And so I asked Scott what he wished the everyday consumer understood about his product. He responded,
‘I want people to know that I’m producing a safe product. I think there is a lot of fear around where our food comes from. But hopefully coming straight to the source you can see that we take pride in what we do and we want to produce food that is safe to eat, because our family eats it too.'”
Research has shown that consumers want to know more about their food, how it is produced and where it comes from. By inviting influencers such as food bloggers to the farm, Kansas farmers are able to share their story with a broader consumer audience.

 

Jessica of A-Kitchen-Addiction.com in Minneapolis, Minnesota, wrote, “I love learning more about where my food comes from. There is so much information out there from all different sides, so it is nice to go straight to the source and see it for myself.”

 

“I enjoyed our time with Scott, and I was impressed with his passion for farming and commitment to doing it right,” wrote Annalise of CompletelyDelicious.com in Salt Lake City, Utah. “And I loved learning the story behind all that flour I use in my baking!”

 

The #Wheat2Bread tour also had Jenny Goering, a farmer from McPherson County, accompany the food bloggers the duration of the trip. This allowed participants to always have a farmer on hand to ask questions of. Goering was able to share her experiences managing two farms, one conventional and one organic, and tell tales of her family’s harvest traditions.

 

Stefani of CupcakeProject.com in St. Louis, Missouri, loved the interactions she was able to have with Kansas wheat farmers.

 

“As someone whose livelihood is so closely tied to wheat, it was an honor to get to stand in wheat fields and meet the folks who bring the wheat to us,” she wrote.

 

Adriana from AdrianasBestRecipes.com in Orlando, Florida, encouraged her readers to ask farmers when they have questions about food.

 

“Many times I have shared the importance of getting to know where the food that we eat comes from,” wrote Adriana. “If you have the chance to meet a farmer, ask questions and learn the process. Nonetheless, the appreciation for food and the knowledge of what you and your family are consuming is safe and nutritious.”

 

One of her readers, “Erica,” commented, “I think it’s really interesting to learn about farming and food production.”

 

While in Kansas, the bloggers also visited Farmer Direct Foods in New Cambria and the Kansas Wheat Innovation Center in Manhattan. There, they had a hands-on baking experience where they got to complete the farm to food circle. Jill Ladd, a registered dietitian, was also on hand to talk about wheat’s nutritional value.

 

Other bloggers on the tour included Lori from TheKitchenWhisperer.net in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania; Abby from HeartofaBaker.com in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Sally from SallysBakingAddiction.com in Baltimore, Maryland; and Jamie from LoveBakesGoodCakes.com in Phoenix, Arizona.

 “Better than expected, but not what we’d hoped for.”
This is what I heard when I asked Kansas farmers about this year’s wheat harvest.  Still, with the little moisture received during the growing season, the 2018 wheat crop panned out better than most Kansas farmers thought it would.
Steve Boor, Lincoln County farmer wrapped up harvest June 30, two weeks after he began. The 2018 wheat harvest dragged on longer than usual because of the pesky showers that dropped a few hundredths of rain then disappeared. The rain resulted in harvest delays as Boor and other farmers waited for the crop to dry out.
In addition to the holdups, the veteran Lincoln County wheat producer says the quality varied, the yields varied – everything varied. The wheat looked much better going into the (combine) header than it did going into the bin.
“Just spots, spots and more spots,” Boor says. “We’d be cutting along and go through a thin spot and ask, ‘what happened here?’ It obviously wasn’t the drill, it wasn’t the sprayer – it just amazed me that a field of wheat could go from little, if any wheat to good, thick wheat so quickly.”
One of the challenges harvesters face in thin wheat is traveling fast enough to keep a steady mat of crop flowing through the combine. This is necessary to utilize the machine’s large threshing capacity.
Traveling at faster speeds to ensure efficient threshing sometimes presents its own inconveniences.
“Hitting a good-sized badger hole at those  speeds can certainly jar your teeth,” Boor says.
Another sign of a stressed crop this harvest included a small percentage of stalks lodged too close to the ground to recover. Some instances of broken stalks showed up throughout this year’s harvest.
Wheat protein levels on the Lincoln County crop will likely range from the upper 12s to the lower 13s. Yields varied from approximately 50 bushels-per-acre on the river bottom ground in widely isolated small patches to the mid-30s on much of the 2018 crop.
“I’m sure the wheat lightened up a bit the longer we cut,” Boor says. “Still, I’m hoping the test weight hung tough at least about 59 pounds-per-bushel.”
Amazingly enough, this year’s wheat crop demonstrated its ever-enduring properties. It proved once again, wheat needs timely moisture to produce an abundant crop.
During the early period of the growing season after the first of the year, Boor wouldn’t have bet a “plug nickel” on even harvesting this year’s crop considering the lack of snow and rain.
“You cannot fault the wheat for not yielding more,” he says. “The crop just played the hand it was dealt and did the best it could.”
After talking with neighbors and other producers across Kansas, Boor believes the crop he harvested is like many others across the state.
“I didn’t see anyone tearing up the roads with trucks hauling wheat to the elevators,” he says. “I have yet to hear anyone pounding their chest and saying, ‘Look what we cut.’”
Needless to say, there probably will not be much double cropping beans behind this harvested wheat crop. With the lack of moisture in most places of the state, farmers aren’t ready to gamble on a second crop.
The Lincoln County farmer remains optimistic the fall crops will benefit from some timely rains. This would move the milo and beans a long way down the road to a better fall harvest.
“When you’re cutting a tough wheat crop, it’s nice to look across the field and see  milo that looks really good,” Boor says. “We’re not home yet, but with a few good rains, I think we could harvest a decent fall crop.”
And for those few farmers still cutting wheat in the far northwestern region of Kansas?
“Say a prayer for those still trying to finish harvest,” he says. “Wish them luck.”

ARLINGTON, Virginia — Implementation of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) without the United States is a time bomb set to demolish more than 60 years of hard work by multiple generations of U.S. farm families to develop a large and loyal market for U.S. wheat in Japan. The U.S. government has the power, however, to defuse this device and avoid an unnecessary and costly disaster.

Japan became the second country to ratify the CPTPP, which could be implemented in early 2019 after six of the 11 countries that signed the agreement have ratified it. This development comes on the same day the United States and China escalated a trade war that has already imposed harm on U.S. wheat growers, potentially compounding the difficult economic conditions further. Canada and Australia, which are major competitors to the United States in the Japanese wheat market, are also parties to the agreement, meaning implementation would put U.S. wheat farmers at a severe disadvantage in our second biggest wheat market. 

Once implemented, the agreement calls for incrementally discounting the effective import tariffs that Japanese flour millers pay for imported Australian and Canadian milling wheat from about $150 to about $85 per metric ton (MT). Imported U.S. wheat effective tariffs would remain at about $150 per MT.

Sources within the Japanese milling industry estimate this disadvantage would force them to start looking at alternatives to U.S. wheat and cut average total imports of western white, dark northern spring (DNS) and hard red winter (HRW) wheat by more than half — from about 3.1 million metric tons (MMT) per year to 1.35 MMT per year or less. If nothing changes before the effective tariff schedule is fully implemented, U.S. wheat farmers and the U.S. grain trade will essentially be writing a $500 million check every year to Australian and Canadian farmers.

U.S. Wheat Associates and the National Association of Wheat Growers call on the Trump Administration to end this threat by taking the bold but necessary steps toward joining the CPTPP or engaging in bilateral negotiations. We see no other way to stop a situation that we believe will cut already unprofitable cash wheat prices even further. 

BERLIN – Germany’s farmers expect a poor harvest this year due to a prolonged drought and an unusually long stretch of warm weather.

The head of Germany’s farmers association, Joachim Rukwied, said Thursday that the grain harvest is expected to reach 41 million metric tons (45.2 million tons) this year, a drop of almost 20 per cent compared with the recent five-year average.

Rukwied described conditions this year as “extreme,” particularly in Germany’s northeastern breadbasket state of Brandenburg.

He said a very short spring and record temperatures in May meant many crops failed to develop properly, prompting farmers to start harvesting early this year.

Scientists say much of Europe can expect to see average temperatures rise and extreme weather events increase over the coming decades, due to climate change.

Topeka – While there have been some recent rains, drought conditions for many areas of Kansas continue to worsen.  Today Governor Jeff Colyer updated the Drought Declaration for Kansas counties with Executive Order 18-16 (attached).  The update includes all 105 counties either in an emergency, warning or watch status. This order places nearly half of Kansas counties in an emergency drought status.

“Kansans need to know no matter where you live in the state, the drought is not over,” said Governor Jeff Colyer.  “I’ve heard many concerns from producers and have seen the conditions first hand. We appreciate our federal partners at the Natural Resources Conservation Service as well as the Kansas Association of Conservation Districts— when we asked them to identify additional sources of assistance they responded quickly to help producers address these extreme drought conditions.”

The updated drought declaration has 50 counties in emergency status, 27 in warning status while 28 counties are in watch status. This action was recommended by Tracy Streeter, Director of the Kansas Water Office (KWO) and Chair of the Governor’s Drought Response Team.

“With reported livestock water shortages, low flows at some of our reservoirs and monthly outlooks favoring persistent drought we know it’s imperative to monitor conditions closely,” said Tracy Streeter. “Some areas of Kansas are behind more than 15 inches in moisture for the year and outlooks favor above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation in July.”

Counties in emergency stage are eligible for emergency use of water from certain state fishing lakes due to the KWO Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Kansas Department of Wildlife (KDWPT). They also become eligible for water in some Federal reservoirs.

Individuals and communities need to contact KWO for a water supply request prior to any withdrawals from lakes. They will in turn be referred to the appropriate office to obtain the necessary permit to withdraw the water.

This Executive Order and any authorized upgrade shall remain in effect for those counties so identified until rescinded by Executive Order or superseded by a subsequent Executive Order revising the drought stage status of the affected counties. Effective immediately:

  • Declare a Drought Emergency, Warning or Drought Watch for the counties identified below;
  • Authorize and direct all agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor to implement the appropriate watch or warning level-drought response actions assigned in the Operations Plan of the Governor’s Drought Response Team.

The Governor’s Drought Response Team will continue to watch the situation closely and work to minimize the effects the drought has on Kansans.

For more detailed information about current conditions, see the Kansas Climate Summary and Drought Report on the Kansas Water Office website at: www.kwo.ks.gov.

County Drought Stage Declarations:

Drought Emergency: Barber, Barton, Butler, Chase, Clark, Clay, Coffey, Comanche, Cowley, Dickinson, Edwards, Ellsworth, Finney, Ford, Geary, Grant, Gray, Greenwood, Hamilton, Harper, Harvey, Haskell, Hodgeman, Kearny, Kingman, Kiowa, Lincoln, Lyon, Marion, McPherson, Meade, Morris, Morton, Osage, Ottawa, Pawnee, Pottawatomie,  Pratt, Reno, Rice, Riley, Saline, Sedgwick, Seward, Shawnee, Stafford, Stanton, Stevens, Sumner, Wabaunsee

Drought Warning: Allen, Anderson, Atchison, Brown, Chautauqua, Doniphan, Douglas, Elk, Ellis, Franklin, Greeley, Jackson, Jefferson, Lane, Leavenworth, Montgomery, Nemaha, Neosho, Ness, Rush, Russell, Scott, Trego, Wallace, Wichita, Wilson, Woodson

Drought Watch: Bourbon, Cherokee, Cheyenne, Cloud, Crawford, Decatur, Gove, Graham, Jewell, Johnson, Labette, Linn, Logan, Marshall, Miami, Mitchell, Norton, Osborne, Phillips, Rawlins, Republic, Rooks, Sheridan, Sherman, Smith, Thomas, Washington, Wyandotte