Kansas Winter Wheat Harvest Behind Schedule Due to Rain Setbacks
According to a recent article from Bloomberg Businessweek, rain in south-central Kansas is slowing the beginning of the winter wheat harvest.
The Kansas Agricultural Statistics Service reported on Monday that just 11% of the Kansas winter wheat is now ripe, in contrast to this time last year, when 97% of the crop had ripened; the average for this time of year is reportedly 44%. The agency also rated 45% of this year’s winter wheat crop as “poor to very poor,” 27% in “fair condition,” 24% in “good condition,” and 4% in “excellent condition.” Steve Inslee, manager of the OK Co-Op grain elevator in Kiowa, KS, said in the Bloomberg article that the quality of wheat brought in over the last few days has been “all over the board.”
Inslee claims that, while a few local farmers began hauling in wheat last Thursday, much of the wheat harvest is not ready to be cut because the wheat is still green. In Kansas, 21% of winter wheat is normally already in the barn, reports an Agrimoney article, but farmers have a cold spring and rain setbacks to thank for the delayed harvest.
This season, various weather conditions have caused winter wheat producers to struggle; however, farmers are expected to begin harvesting in earnest “within the next three-to-five days,” according to USDA scouts quoted in the Agrimoney article.