News and Information from Around the U.S. Wheat Industry
Speaking of Wheat
“Jim Pellman brings a broad skill set in agriculture and wheat production to the officer team at USW and follows earlier NDWC members who served as USW officers and Chairs during the past four decades: J. Ole Sampson of Lawton, Cecil Watson of Cavalier, Alan Lee of Berthold, and Brian O’Toole of Crystal, North Dakota.” Neal Fisher, Administrator, North Dakota Wheat Commission. Pellman was elected to serve as USW Secretary-Treasurer starting in July 2023 for 2023/24.
Photo Above: Wheat Leaders Greet Members of Congress
National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) President Nicole Berg (left) and U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) Chair Rhonda K. Larson (right) greet Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee (center) at the “Wheat 106” educational event and reception Jan. 13, 2023. At the event, growers and industries engaged in wheat production and processing informed Members of Congress and their staff about how vast and important the wheat value chain is to the U.S. economy and food supply.
Snow Makes Grain
Over 2 meters (78 inches) of snow this winter has eased farmer Lee Lubbers’ moisture concerns about his South Dakota wheat crop. After a four month stretch last summer and fall with almost no measurable precipitation, “the snow will provide the moisture we need to get our [winter] wheat crop off to a good start. This was a big concern as 2022 came to an end,” Lubbers told Successful Farming. In 2022, South Dakota farmers produced about 1.1 million metric tons of hard red winter and hard red spring wheat.
Call for Entries in “Greater Grain” National Wheat Yield Contest
The National Wheat Yield Contest (NWYC) is accepting entries for 2023. Farmers growing winter, spring, irrigated or dryland wheat are encouraged to get their entries in now. There are a couple of changes to this year’s contest rules. There is now only one deadline and one price for entries per growing season. Winter wheat entries are due May 15, 2023, and spring wheat entries are due August 1, 2023. Read more here.
Congratulations to Dr. Brett Carver on Receiving OSU Eminent Faculty Award
“As leader of the Wheat Improvement Team, Dr. Carver has unparalleled success in the development of plant variety cultivars with a record five wheat varieties in 2020,” said Tom Coon, vice president and dean of Oklahoma State University’s college of agriculture. Carver collaborates with the Wheat Foods Council to advocate for wheat and to educate the public on wheat products through a video series. He served on trade team delegations for U.S. Wheat Associates and the Oklahoma Wheat Commission and has been named a Fellow in both the Crop Science Society of America and the American Society of Agronomy. Read an interview with Dr. Carver here.
Past Chair of House Ag Committee Named Wheat Leader
The National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) named U.S. Rep. David Scott (D-GA) its 2022 Wheat Leader of the Year Award for his work as the Chair of the House Agriculture Committee during the 117th Congress. “We appreciate all the work Rep. Scott does on behalf of wheat farmers and are proud to present him with the 2022 Wheat Leader of the Year Award,” said NAWG President and Washington wheat farmer Nicole Berg. NAWG also presented six other Members of Congress with its Wheat Advocate Award for their support in 2022. Read more here.
UK Farmer Sets Guinness World Record Wheat and Barley Yields
In 2022, United Kingdom grain grower Tim Lamyman, who farms 600 hectares in the county of Lincolnshire achieved a wheat yield of 17.96 metric tons (MT)/hectare (267 bu/acre), beating the previous record of 17.40 MT (259 bu/acre) from New Zealand farmer Eric Watson in 2020. He also registered a barley yield of 16.21 MT (310 bu/acre) to the hectare, beating his own world record by two metric tons. Read more here.
Research Shows Wheat is Good for Soil Health
Dr. Laura Van Eerd, professor of sustainable soil management at Canada’s University of Guelph-Ridgetown, has studied long-term soil characteristics and changes as part of research started in 1995. Of all treatment combinations, including wheat in a rotation has been the greatest factor in improved soil function over time, greatly increasing soil organic matter (SOM). Increasing organic matter in soils has implications for the soil’s water holding capacity and the soil’s nitrogen cycling capability. Listen to more in a Michigan State University Extension podcast.
USDA Funding Advances “Climate Smart” Farming
USDA is releasing the first $850 million in conservation program funding from the $18 billion provided by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) to ramp up adoption of climate-smart farming practices. The new funding will be available through Environmental Quality Incentives Program, Conservation Stewardship Program, Agricultural Conservation Easement Program and Regional Conservation Partnership Program. Provisions in the IRA require the new funding to be targeted toward practices that can build soil carbon and otherwise reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Read more here.
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