7 September 2001
Harvest 2001: barley stays in barn

By Tom Hood

FARMERS and traders in Scotland continue to be disappointed with spring barley quality and some farmers remain frustrated that none of it is moving off farms.

With weather set to be changeable over the weekend, farmers are anxious to get more crops in.

With about 50% of spring barley combined and 15% of winter wheat, quality of spring barley is becoming a major concern for Eildon Grains Jim Lofthouse.

The quality of malting is poor with splits and skinning and quite a bit of fusarium and I dont expect much of the other 50% to be malting standard, he told FARMERS WEEKLY on 7 September.

Wheat quality is good. It is mainly biscuit wheat in the Borders. Claire is good quality and has protein up to 12% with Hagbergs over 120-150.

John Drysdale, who farms near Kirkcaldy in Fife, is two thirds of his way through the spring barley crop. Weve had 10 days dry weather and progress.

Its a high yield but I wont be happy till Ive sold it off the farm. The market is being hacked to death at the moment.

Quality is mixed. Ive has some splits and skinned grains, but its nothing that cant get dressed out.

Yields have been below average for Michael Manners, who farms at Staindrop near Darlington. He had difficulty drilling last autumn and therefore only has spring wheat.

Caley Sackur, who farms near Driffield in Yorkshire, has had good yield and quality in milling wheat.

Quality and yield have both been pleasing. First crop Abbott yielded 10t/ha (4t/acre) and Hereward yielded 8.6t/ha (3.5t/acre).

Hagbergs have been above 300, with 14% protein and specific weight of 82Kg/hl. Weve had some showery weather but not enough to spoil things.

Dalgetys Peter Chaplain, in Shrewsbury, describes the wheat harvest as, a mixed bag. Yield and quality are very variable.

Lancashire have had a bad run and is still slow. Some of their late drilled winter wheat is still not fit or just becoming fit.

Justin Blackwood, farmer and crop consultant from Northamptonshire, describes this seasons wheat harvest as extremely variable.

Claire and Consort drilled at the end of September have had exceptional yields. One field averaged 5t/acre and a large acreage has yielded over 4t/acre.

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