The Wheat Scoop is a weekly news feature from the Kansas Wheat Commission, informing wheat farmers, the grain industry and the public about the marketing and utilization of Kansas wheat. Hosted by Marsha Boswell, the features cover a wide range of topics, from breeding new wheat varieties to domestic and international utilization, as well as new uses, nutrition and trends in domestic and international wheat foods and wheat flour consumption. Each edition is approximately 3-minutes in length.
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PROVIDING INPUT ON THE FARM BILL– With negotiations for the next Farm Bill underway, Kansas Wheat, U.S. Wheat Associates and the National Association of Wheat Growers encourage wheat farmers to provide input and to make their priorities known. Wheat farmers participating in KAWG, the Kansas Association of Wheat Growers, have a voice that can relay messages and concerns to Congressional offices and the national association. Mary Marsh has more.
WOMEN MANAGING THE FARM– The upcoming Women Managing the Farm Conference will again provide an opportunity for meaningful conversations between women farmers, rural business leader and landowners. As the conference approaches its 20th anniversary, Vice President of Communications at Kansas Wheat and Past-Chair for WMF, Marsha Boswell, says organizers also looking at some-long-term planning to identify what changes would be most beneficial to women farmers and conference attendees. Mary Marsh has more.
A WINNING FORMULA FOR WHEAT– Brothers John and Matt Grabbe put Schoenchen, Kansas, near Hays, on the map by placing second and third in the 2022 National Wheat Yield Contest. John placed second in Kansas in the winter dryland category and Matt took third in the same category. The brothers, who farm as equal partners with their mother, attribute their success this past growing season to the right combination of wheat genetics, farming practices and moisture. Marsha Boswell has more.
WEIGHING IN ON THE FARM BILL– Two upcoming meetings provide Kansas growers an opportunity to listen and interact with policy makers and policy-watchers as they work to address farmers’ needs in the upcoming growing season and Farm Bill negotiations. On January 26th, the Kansas Association of Wheat Growers holds its annual meeting in Manhattan. On January 27th, the 2023 Kansas Commodity Classic – the annual convention of Kansas corn, wheat, soybean, and grain sorghum associations – is being held in Salina. Mary Marsh has more.
NATIONAL FESTIVAL OF BREADS– Amateur bakers across the country are encouraged to enter their favorite yeast bread or roll recipe for the chance to become the Best of Breads Champion in the 2023 National Festival of Breads. Entries for the contest are being accepted through February 13th. Cindy Falk, co-chairperson of the event and nutrition educator for Kansas Wheat, says the virtual contest offers expanded opportunities for competitors and allows those at home to join in celebrating the creativity of America’s home bakers. Mary Marsh has more.
KANSAS WHEAT INNOVATION CENTER– The Kansas Wheat Innovation Center, built by the Kansas Wheat Commission, through the Kansas wheat checkoff, recently celebrated its 10th anniversary in the facility. The goal was to get improved wheat varieties into the hands of farmers faster at a time when private research in wheat was limited. Kansas Wheat vice president of research and operations, Aaron Harries, says it’s exciting to know that the Center has exceeded expectations, and that even bigger things are anticipated in the next couple of decades. Mary Marsh has more.
A DEEP DIVE INTO FLOUR MILLING– Farmers and State Wheat Commission staffers recently attended a flour milling course presented by the IGP Institute and Kansas State University. The three-day course is considered a “deep-dive” into flour milling that’s built specifically for producers who sit on boards of state wheat organizations, as well as those who work for those organizations. Representatives from Idaho, Kansas, Oklahoma and Oregon were involved in the course. Mary Marsh has more.
WOMEN MANAGING THE FARM CONFERENCE– The annual Women Managing the Farm Conference is being held February 15-17 in Manhattan. The conference provides an opportunity for meaningful conversations between women farmers, rural business leaders and landowners. The 2023 conference sessions are designed to keep women up-to-date on the latest advancements in agriculture and thriving within their rural communities. Marsha Boswell has more.
TRIPLE-DIGIT DRYLAND WHEAT– A fifth-generation farmer in northwest Kansas was able to harvest triple-digit dryland wheat with less than five inches of rain this past summer. As Mary Marsh reports, this plot of WestBred Grainfield near Hoxie yielded 106.34 bushels per acre in the 2022 National Wheat Yield Contest and earned him the top spot in Kansas for dryland winter wheat and fifth nationally in percent increase over the county average.
HARD RED WINTER WHEAT FOR FISH– There’s a variety of uses for hard red winter wheat, but one that may be a bit surprising is fish food. In Ecuador, high protein hard red winter wheat is being used to feed shrimp. In Southern Chile, it’s being used to feed salmon. Mary Marsh has more.
NATIONAL WHEAT YIELD CONTEST– 2022 National Wheat Yield Contest winners were recently announced by the National Wheat Foundation. Kansas Wheat CEO, Justin Gilpin, says the contest offers producers a chance to learn from counterparts from across the country how to maximize their management to improve yields and quality. Mary Marsh has more on the National Wheat Yield Contest, including the winners from Kansas.
NATIONAL BREAD MONTH– A traditional Thanksgiving celebration probably wouldn’t be complete without all the smells and tastes that accompany the holiday. November is National Bread Month and Kansas Wheat is promoting wheat’s place at the family dinner table with recipes for making the perfect dinner rolls, pie crusts and pumpkin and sweet potato rolls. Marsha Boswell has more.
EXCELLENT HRW QUALITY– Recently released quality information from U.S. Wheat Associates adds a positive note to an otherwise disheartening 2022 wheat harvest – despite persistent drought conditions that limited yields, U.S. farmers produced one of the highest quality hard red winter crops in years. While the wheat crop took a hit on volume, overall protein, milling yield and loaf volume were significantly higher than average. Mary Marsh has more.
KANSAS WHEAT RECIPE BOOK– For those anxiously awaiting the release of the 2022 Kansas Wheat Recipe Book, the wait is finally over. The annual recipe book from the Kansas Wheat Commission is now available free of charge. This year’s book pays homage to the 50th anniversary of the Wheat Foods Council and National Bake and Take Day. Mary Marsh has more.
NATIONAL COOPERATIVE MONTH– The local cooperative is where farmers deliver and store their grain, market their crops, obtain field recommendations and purchase inputs. October is National Cooperative Month and Brandi Miller, president/CEO of the Kansas Cooperative Council, and her team are hitting the road this month to visit with cooperatives and their members. Mary Marsh has more.
PLANTING AND HOPING– Continued drought and delays in fieldwork and fertilizer delivery have many Kansas wheat producers “dusting in” next year’s crop, praying for rain and holding out hope that next year’s harvest is better than the last. For the week ending October 9th, half of the Kansas wheat crop had been planted, slightly behind the five-year average. However, emergence was well behind the five-year average. Mary Marsh has more.
WHEAT STREAK MOSAIC– Persistent drought after harvest and delayed planting could indicate a lower risk of Wheat Streak Mosaic Virus this year. Still, a K-State wheat and forage Extension specialist cautions producers to continue monitoring and managing volunteer wheat as they plant this fall. Mary Marsh has more.
A VISIT TO CAPITOL HILL– In preparation for the next Farm Bill, three Kansas wheat producers went to Capitol Hill to share their perspective of the major issues impacting agriculture and present some potential policy solutions. The wheat producers outlined how leaders can help farmers by promoting agricultural exports, advocating for crop insurance programs, reducing regulatory costs and supporting agricultural research. Mary Marsh has more.
TAIWAN AGREES TO PURCHASE U.S. WHEAT– Kansas agricultural leaders have reached an agreement with a Taiwanese delegation that directly benefits U.S. wheat producers. The letter of intent with representatives from the Taiwan Flour Mills Association (TFMA) states that Kansas wheat farmers will continue to grow high-quality wheat supplies, while importers and suppliers working in Taiwan will negotiate the terms, quantities, prices and conditions for the purchase and sale of wheat. Under the agreement, Taiwan will purchase 69.8 million bushels of U.S. wheat, worth approximately $567 million from U.S. farmers over the next two years. Mary Marsh has more.
KANSAS WHEAT FARMER FEEDBACK– The Kansas Wheat Innovation Center has been helping Kansas wheat producers for almost a decade. In advance of that milestone, the Kansas Wheat Commission gathered feedback from Kansas wheat farmers on a variety of topics. This included obstacles like infrastructure, market volatility and supply chain disruptions as well as the value they see in improved genetics, sustainable production practices and regionally specific management practices. Mary Marsh has more.
SOIL TEST FOR SUCCESS– K-State Agronomy recently released guidance on an action that could save wheat producers some cost and set the 2023 harvest up for success from day one – soil sampling. According to K-State Nutrient Management Specialist Dorivar Ruiz Diaz, sampling is particularly important because high fertilizer prices are contributing to very tight margins for wheat. Mary Marsh has more.
UNBIASED WHEAT VARIETY TESTING– The Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station’s annual report provides critical data and insight to help Kansas wheat producers select the optimal varieties for their operations. K-State does not endorse or recommend varieties, but instead, compares data from scientifically conducted performance tests at several sites. K-State also includes information on other greenhouse and laboratory tests, including pest tolerance, baking quality and other factors. Mary Marsh has more.
FARMING, BLOGGING, COMMUNITY– Following a season of last farm milestones and a farm machinery sale, a longtime northeast Kansas farm family is looking for their next adventure. Marsha Boswell has the story of how this husband and wife have shared their love of agriculture and community through their work – on and off the farm.
PROMOTING U.S. WHEAT GLOBALLY– U.S. Wheat Associates President Vince Peterson often says, at any given hour of the day there is someone, somewhere, talking about the quality, reliability and value of U.S. wheat. Marsha Boswell looks at some of the ways U.S. Wheat Associates was working in June and July to promote all six classes of U.S. wheat in an ever more complex world grain market.
KANSAS 4-H/FFA WHEAT EXPO– This year’s Kansas 4-H/FFA Wheat Expo, held in Stafford, provided youth an opportunity to showcase their talents and skills in many projects while also focusing on what the state is known for – wheat. In addition to exhibits, Mary Marsh says participants could practice their judging skills by ranking classes of wheat, bread and photography as well as identifying common weeds.
A VISIT FROM TOP CUSTOMERS– As part of a nine day visit to Kansas, Washington state and Ohio, a team of senior managers and wheat buyers from Colombian flour mills and the leader of the Colombian milling and wheat food industries association recently visited Kansas Wheat. Mary Marsh says the U.S. Wheat trade team’s in-person visit to Kansas reinforces the importance of trade relationships with top customers from Colombia.
YOUNG MILLERS LEARN ABOUT HRW– A team of young flour millers and commodity buyers from the Middle East and North Africa recently spent time in Kansas learning about hard red winter wheat production. According to Marsha Boswell, the team visited research facilities and met with leading wheat researchers.
UPCOMING WHEAT Rx SEMINARS– How to capture value for high-quality wheat and wheat health and intensive wheat management are just two of the topics being covered at upcoming Wheat Rx seminars. These programs are a partnership between Kansas Wheat and K-state Research and Extension to disseminate the latest research recommendations for high-yielding and high-quality wheat to Kansas wheat farmers. The Wheat Rx seminars are being held August 9th in Phillipsburg and August 10th in Garden City. Mary Marsh has more.
WTO IMPACT ON U.S. WHEAT– The World Trade Organization (WTO) recently conducted ministerial meetings in Geneva. Dalton Henry, vice president of policy with U.S. Wheat Associates, explained how the actions – both those taken and not taken at the meeting – will impact U.S. wheat farmers. Mary Marsh has more.
WHEAT FOODS COUNCIL TURNS 50– Wheat Commissions from Kansas and four other states helped establish the Wheat Foods Council in the early 1970s to develop sound nutritional, educational and promotional programs in response to an attack that wheat foods were high in carbohydrates. The Wheat Foods Council recently celebrated its 50th-anniversary during its summer meeting. Marsha Boswell has more.
OBSERVING THE WHEAT HARVEST– A team of Mexican flour millers got a firsthand look at the Kansas wheat harvest during visits to Kansas and Ohio in June. In addition to several tour stops across Kansas, Marsha Boswell says the team had an opportunity to evaluate their main material directly from the source.
RESOURCES TO HELP 4-H YOUTH– While farm families across Kansas are focused on wheat harvest, county fair deadlines are also quickly approaching. Whether it’s catching samples for the production project, snapping the perfect harvest photo during dinner or trying to find the best recipe for a foods entry, Kansas Wheat has resources available and additional opportunities for youth to share those projects with others. Marsha Boswell has more.
K-STATE AGRONOMY WHEAT GUIDANCE– A trio of recent updates from K-State Agronomy provides wheat producers with guidance on combine adjustments for thin wheat stands, post-harvest weed control, and double cropping options following harvest. Mary Marsh has more.
WHEAT PROTEIN PRODUCTION– The largest domestic supplier of wheat protein in the United States, producing about 75 million pounds of wheat protein annually, is located in Russell, Kansas. That’s more than half the domestic production, and the facility recently completed an expansion that increased capacity by 50 percent. Mary Marsh has more.
PROMOTING WHEAT EXPORTS– A new study out of a leading land-grant university indicates that a couple of government market promotion programs are paying dividends for the wheat industry and the growers who make it go. They add to the wheat checkoff-funded efforts to develop the global customer base for U.S. wheat. Marsha Boswell has more.
ATTACKING WHEAT BUNT PROBLEM– The plant disease known as common bunt has been asserting itself in Kansas wheat fields in recent years. It has become a costly problem for growers…so much so, that researchers at Kansas State University have launched an all-out effort to learn more about the disease and what can be done to curb it. Mary Marsh has more.
WHEAT TOUR RESULTS– Sponsored by the Wheat Quality Council, the 2022 Hard Winter Wheat Tour of Kansas and neighboring states just concluded. Tour participants inspected scores of wheat fields across the state to come up with an estimate on this year’s Kansas crop. And to the surprise of no one, the projected yield was far short of the norm. Mary Marsh provides a recap on this week’s Kansas Wheat Scoop.
WHEAT SHIPMENT ISSUES– Snags in the movement of wheat and other grains by rail from country elevators to downstream market points are gaining national attention. The magnitude of the rail freight shipment problem is resonating with many agricultural interests, including wheat farmers who are weighing in on the issue. Mary Marsh has more.
FOOD AID EFFORTS– The Russian attack on Ukraine is leaving an indelible mark on world food supplies…prompting the need for ramped-up international food aid from the U.S. Interestingly, the origins of such aid go back some 70 years, upon the inspiration of a northwest Kansas wheat farmer. And to this day, wheat remains a mainstay of food aid efforts to needy countries. Marsha Boswell has more.
RUSSIA/UKRAINE WHEAT IMPACTS– The Russian invasion of Ukraine and the subsequent battle continues to resonate in international wheat channels. With both of those countries being major players in world wheat production, the impacts are definitely felt in Kansas wheat country. Mary Marsh takes a closer look.
CHEF WHEAT KNOWLEDGE– It is in the interest of wheat producers that all end users of the grain be informed about the product as much as they can be. Recent outreach efforts targeting professional chefs were conducted for this purpose, and they were deemed quite successful. Mary Marsh has more.
WHEAT SCHOLARSHIP WINNER– An agriculture-enthusiastic student from eastern Kansas has just been awarded a prestigious scholarship by the Kansas Association of Wheat Growers. The scholarship is named for a legendary figure in the Kansas wheat industry. Marsha Boswell has the story.
WORSENING WHEAT CONDITIONS– Relentless dry weather is really starting to put pressure on the condition of the Kansas winter wheat crop now. As several leading wheat producers testify, the moisture situation needs to improve as soon as possible to avoid damage to yields. Mary Marsh has more.
WHEAT MARKETER TRAINING– U.S wheat marketing professionals from around the world recently came to Kansas to brush up on what’s happening in the wheat research and production arenas. Their visit comes at a time when the world wheat market is very much up for grabs because of recent geo-political events. Mary Marsh has more.
WHEAT YIELD CONTEST– As the winter wheat crop breaks dormancy and resumes growth, growers can start sizing up their prospects for entering the 2022 National Wheat Yield Contest. Entries are now being taken, and Mary Marsh showcases the event on this week’s Kansas Wheat Scoop.
BAKE-AND-TAKE MONTH– Many years ago, a wheat industry advocacy group called the Kansas Wheathearts initiated something called “Bake-and-Take Month” to promote baking wheat foods. That promotion, which is still going strong, is observed during the month of March. Marsha Boswell has more.
WHEAT GENETIC DEVELOPMENT– Scientists at Kansas State University continue to reach back into the past for genetic answers to wheat variety improvement. And recently, they’ve met with still more successes, identifying genetic material that could lead to greater yield performance. Mary Marsh has more.
NEW WHEAT VARIETY– It came about in somewhat unconventional fashion, but the newest wheat variety release out of Kansas State University’s wheat breeding program is now set for its debut. It is likely to join the ranks of previous K-State varieties that have performed well for producers in Kansas and the central plains region. Mary Marsh has more.
CLUTTER SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITY– Every year, Kansas Wheat supports the higher education of a young person interested in the field of agriculture, via the Herb Clutter Memorial Scholarship. It’s named for one of the founding organizers of wheat producers in the state of Kansas, and applications are due very soon. Mary Marsh has more.
AG WOMEN’S CONFERENCE RECAP– A major conference for women in agriculture recently took place in Manhattan, co-sponsored by Kansas Wheat. The program was loaded with important contemporary information for the large audience attending. Mary Marsh has a recap.
ADVANCING WHEAT QUALITY– Wheat development and management experts at Kansas State University, along with private wheat interests, are championing the cause for higher-quality wheat out of the field. And they spoke on achieving that at two recent and well-attended Wheat Rx seminars in Kansas. Marsha Boswell provides a recap.
WHEAT CONDITION UPDATE– The widespread dryness in Kansas from last fall to the present has raised concerns about the state of the winter wheat crop. It’s a long way to harvest time, and wheat’s traditional resistance to adverse conditions will be put to the test. But some positive signs are starting to show up. Marsha Boswell has more.
WINTER BREAD BAKING– The Wheat Foods Council, of which Kansas Wheat is a participant, is encouraging families to take advantage of time indoors during the remainder of the winter to experience the enjoyment of baking bread and other wheat-based delicacies. Marsha Boswell endorses that idea on this week’s Kansas Wheat Scoop.
WHEAT RESEARCH RECOMMENDATIONS– Two upcoming seminars will present Kansas wheat farmers with the latest recommendations for high-yielding and high-quality wheat. The day-long seminars, being held February 8th in Wichita and February 9th in Hays, are part of Wheat Rx, a partnership between Kansas Wheat and K-State Research and Extension. Marsha Boswell has more.
FARM WOMEN CONFERENCE– Over the last two decades, it has proven extremely popular with women who are involved with production agriculture…the annual Women Managing the Farm Conference. Co-sponsored by Kansas Wheat, this year’s conference will be an in-person event once again. It takes place in early February, and Marsha Boswell has the full details.
WHEAT PRODUCER MEETINGS– A tandem of events set for later this month will be of great interest to Kansas wheat growers. One will center on developing policy in support of the wheat industry, and the other will feature keynote speakers addressing current issues of high importance to producers. Marsha Boswell has a preview of both meetings.