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Over $3.3 Million in Wheat Production Research and Education
Kentucky Ag Connection - 01/03/2019

Growing winter wheat and other cool season grains in Kentucky is not an easy task. With this year's weather, farmers have had the smallest wheat harvest in years, but they have renewed faith for the current crop in the ground thanks to new agronomic technologies, reports the Kentucky Small Grain Growers Association (KySGGA).

Production research has always been a major priority of KySGGA. In fact, the organization has dedicated more than $3.3 million in checkoff to research over the last 26 years. Of that amount, more than $1 million is directed toward the Grain and Forage Center of Excellence.

With the Association's support and farmer collaboration, extension experts and private consultants have helped Kentucky wheat production grow 87 percent since the Kentucky Small Grain Promotion Council was formed, and the two previous years have resulted in record average wheat yields: 80 bushels per acre in 2016, and 77 bushels per acre in 2017. Unfortunately, 2018 dealt a blow, providing some growers the worst wheat crop in years. The average yield was last estimated at only 66 bushels per acre.

The good news is that, according to the USDA WASDE report, wheat use and exports are projected to increase, and stocks are expected to decrease. Todd Davis, UK extension grain marketing specialist, says this scenario should support higher wheat prices.

To increase opportunity for our growers, KySGGA is also supporting research and market development of other small grain crops, such as barley and rye for the booming distilling industry.

To view the KySGGA annual report and research updates, go to www.kysmallgrains.org/research.


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