Aaron Harries, Kansas Wheat’s Director of Marketing, reports from Wichita:
The 2012 Wheat Quality Council Hard Red Winter Wheat Tour departed Colby early Tuesday morning with expectations of lower yield predictions than those recorded on day one. The participants took six routes across the western and southern sections of Kansas to reach Wichita Wednesday evening. In all, 286 field stops were made.
The group estimated a Day Two average of 43.7 bushels per acre. This compares to 33.4 in 2011. The two-day average for the 2012 tour is 48.5 bpa, compared to 36.7 last year. Good yields were noted between Colby and Scott City and in far West Central Kansas.
Drought impact was more notable on Day Two, particularly in Southwest Kansas. The worst drought-stressed wheat is generally south of a Scott City to Hoisington line and west of a Hoisington to Medicine Lodge line. Some southwest counties did receive rain early this week, but more will be needed within the next seven days.
Crop conditions improve dramatically and quickly east of Medicine Lodge into South Central Kansas.
There is some very good wheat in South Central Kansas that has adequate moisture and is for the most part disease free. The combination of fungicide applications and heat seem to have kept rust in check. Storm damage was less than expected.
Crop progress is still three weeks ahead of schedule and most on the tour predicted that it may begin in as little as three weeks in Southern Kansas. On Day Three, tour participants will make a handful of field stops on their way to the Kansas City Board of Trade where the group’s 2012 Kansas production estimate will be announced Thursday afternoon.
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