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Snapshots in time

Slideshow: The annual Wheat Tour is a snapshot of the crop in time at points across the state of Kansas.

Jennifer M. Latzke, Editor

May 21, 2024

11 Slides

The 2024 Wheat Quality Council Hard Winter Wheat Tour is a three-day marathon drive from Manhattan, to Colby, to Wichita, and back to Manhattan, Kan. Over those three days, participants learn how to measure the crop, and using USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service equations estimate, what the crop may yield if conditions remain the same until harvest. This year’s tour estimated that the Kansas crop has a yield potential of 290.4 million bushels.

See the individual Wheat Tour daily reports:

2024 Wheat Tour, Rice County, Kan.

2024 Wheat Tour, Day 2 shows effects of rain

2024 Wheat Tour, stripe rust starting to pop in northwest fields

2024 Wheat Tour, Day 2, Caldwell, Kan.

Follow along with this “snapshot in time” in the album above.

About the Author(s)

Jennifer M. Latzke

Editor, Kansas Farmer

Through all her travels, Jennifer M. Latzke knows that there is no place like Kansas.

Jennifer grew up on her family’s multigenerational registered Angus seedstock ranch and diversified farm just north of Woodbine, Kan., about 30 minutes south of Junction City on the edge of the Kansas Flint Hills. Rock Springs Ranch State 4-H Center was in her family’s backyard.

While at Kansas State University, Jennifer was a member of the Sigma Kappa Sorority and a national officer for the Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow. She graduated in May 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural communications and a minor in animal science. In August 2000 Jennifer started her 20-year agricultural writing career in Dodge City, Kan., on the far southwest corner of the state.

She’s traveled across the U.S. writing on wheat, sorghum, corn, cotton, dairy and beef stories as well as breaking news and policy at the local, state and national levels. Latzke has traveled across Mexico and South America with the U.S. Wheat Associates and toured Vietnam as a member of KARL Class X. She’s traveled to Argentina as one of 10 IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism. And she was part of a delegation of AAEA: The Ag Communicators Network members invited to Cuba.

Jennifer’s an award-winning writer, columnist, and podcaster, recognized by the Kansas Professional Communicators, Kansas Press Association, the National Federation of Presswomen, Livestock Publications Council, and AAEA. In 2019, Jennifer reached the pinnacle of achievements, earning the title of “Writer of Merit” from AAEA.

Trips and accolades are lovely, but Jennifer says she is happiest on the road talking to farmers and ranchers and gathering stories and photos to share with readers.

“It’s an honor and a great responsibility to be able to tell someone’s story and bring them recognition for their work on the land,” Jennifer says. “But my role is also evolving to help our more urban neighbors understand the issues our Kansas farmers face in bringing the food and fiber to their store shelves.”

She spends her time gardening, crafting, watching K-State football, and cheering on her nephews and niece in their 4-H projects. She can be found on Twitter at @Latzke.

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