Be ready to record rainfall this summer if you produce wheat for human consumption, advised Simon Edwards of Harper Adams University College.
Monitoring rainfall at flowering (GS59-69) and pre-harvest (from GS87) became a new requirement last season within the HGCA’s fusarium mycotoxin risk assessment tool, and the risk score needed recording on grain passports, explained Dr Edwards at the recent HGCA Agronomy workshop in Newmarket, Suffolk.
There were strict EU legal limits on the amount of DON (deoxynivalenol) and ZON (zearalenone) mycotoxins in grain intended for human food, and some processors demanded even lower levels.
Few growers monitored such rainfall, he suspected. “But the risk assessment is your due diligence defence if anything goes wrong.”
To reduce the risk he urged growers to avoid sowing wheat after maize, especially maize for grain, which left more fusarium-harbouring residues.
Read more from the HGCA workshop
• Light life spot and ramularia predicted to hit more crops this season.
• Smaller growers can gain more from natural disease.
• HGCA to update nozzle guide in time for Cereals.