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Kansas wheat farmers overcome drought to bring home awards from 2022 National Wheat Yield Contest.

December 21, 2022

2 Min Read
Wheat field
CONTEST WINNERS: Kansas Wheat has announced the state winners of the 2022 National Wheat Yield Contest in the irrigated and dryland categories. ithinksky /Getty images

While triple-digit yields may have seemed impossible during this year’s drought, Kansas wheat producers exemplified how the right combination of genetics, management and luck pay off with the winning entries in the 2022 National Wheat Yield Contest. National and state winners were recently released by the National Wheat Foundation, which has organized the competition for the past seven years.

“The National Wheat Yield Contest offers producers a chance to learn from counterparts from across the country how to maximize their management to improve yields and quality,” said Justin Gilpin, Kansas Wheat CEO. “Kansas wheat producers continually demonstrate they are up to the challenge by adopting new practices that utilize the full potential of top-of-the-line wheat genetics.”

The national contest was split into winter wheat and spring wheat and then divided into dryland and irrigated production. Contestants had to prove their wheat would grade at levels 1 or 2 to compete.

Dryland winter wheat

In the dryland winter wheat category, Brett Oelke from Hoxie took the top Kansas spot with an entry of WestBred Grainfield that yielded 106.34 bushels per acre. The entry also earned Oelke fifth place nationally for percentage increase over the county average.

As one of the 24 national winners, Oelke is shipping in a grain sample that will be analyzed for additional quality parameters. If the winning samples meet all the specified “customer-desired” quality targets, producers will receive a $500 award. In addition, national winners receive a trip to the Commodity Classic in Orlando, Fla., in March 2023 and will be recognized at the National Wheat Foundation’s Winner’s Reception.

Hays producers John and Matt Grabbe took second and third place in Kansas, with entries of WestBred WB4422 that yielded 103.24 bushels per acre, and WestBred WB4792 that yielded 97.88 bushels per acre, respectively.

Irrigated winter wheat

In the irrigated winter wheat category, David Leonard from Goodland placed first in the state with an entry of PlainsGold Langin that yielded 119.57 bushels per acre. Matt Brack from Hutchinson earned second with an entry of WestBred WB4401 that yielded 103.44 bushels per acre.

“We know that genetics, environment and management all need to be just right for wheat to thrive, and we are proud to see so many wheat growers continue to reach for higher and better yields, while also growing wheat that customers desire,” said Joe Kejr, National Wheat Foundation chair and a Kansas producer, in a national release.

Learn more about the National Wheat Yield Contest.

Debes is a freelance writer for Kansas Wheat.

Source: Kansas Wheat

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