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Spring Wheat Harvest Finally Tops 70 Percent
North Dakota Ag Connection - 09/11/2019

A few warm, dry days allowed for some harvest progress last week before wet weather settled back in for the majority of this week. Conditions look to warm up and dry out as we near the weekend. Harvest of the U.S. spring wheat crop is now about 71 percent complete, according to the most recent USDA crop progress report. This is up from 55 percent last week, but still well behind the average of 87 percent. Harvest is furthest behind in Montana and North Dakota where harvest is 62 and 68 percent complete, respectively, compared to an average of around 85 percent. Harvest is about 78 percent complete in Minnesota and 91 percent complete in South Dakota.

Quality analysis continues at the NDSU spring wheat quality lab where about 40 percent of the expected samples have been collected and analyzed. Average moisture is coming in at 13.1 percent, higher than the previous year -- not surprising given the wet harvest season throughout much of the region. Protein so far is similar to last year at 14.6 percent, thousand kernel weight is averaging higher at 33.4 grams, and test weight is slightly lower than last year at 60.4 pounds per bushel (79.5 kg/hl). Falling number values are below last year with the average value so far at 383 seconds. The falling number value is expected to continue to change as more samples are collected given the continued wet conditions and reports from producers and grain handlers of low falling number values in certain areas. Vitreous kernel content on the samples is averaging 66 percent -- another result of the wet harvest season, and the crop currently is grading a #1 Northern Spring.

The durum harvest continues to be behind average as well due to adverse weather conditions. In North Dakota, just under half has been harvested, compared to 85 percent last year and 69 percent on average. In Montana only 40 percent has been harvested compared to 73 percent for both last year and the five-year average. Less than 10 percent of the harvest samples have been collected and analyzed at NDSU. Moisture is higher than last year at 12.5 percent, protein is similar at 14.2 percent, test weight is lower at 60.7 pounds per bushel (79.1 kg/hl), and thousand kernel weight is higher at 41.7 grams. Average falling number is 344 seconds so far, lower than last year and a result of the wet harvest conditions. No grade data is yet available. As with the spring wheat data, quality values will continue to change from week to week as harvest progresses and should not be taken as final data.

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