One-fifth of the UK spring barley crop is still to be cut, while the winter wheat harvest nears completion. The majority of the crops waiting to be combined is in Scotland.
The delays due to rain are having an effect on the quality of late-harvested wheat and oats, although the quality of barley is holding up well, with most meeting malting specifications, reported crop scientists group Adas
Overall, almost 95% of the UK combinable crop area has been cut, according to Adas’s latest weekly report up to 22 September. This includes 97% of winter wheat, 80% of spring barley, 95% of oats and 60% of spring oilseed rape.
In Scotland, the spring barley harvest is about 65% complete, making it the latest harvest in recent years, estimated to be three to four weeks later than normal. This was due to delayed crop maturity followed by delays due to rain as the crops started to ripen.
National yield estimate are above 10-year averages for all crops, Adas added.
- Winter wheat– 97% of the crop is combined with average yields of 8.5-8.7t/ha, a rise of 10-12% above the 10-year average of 7.8t/ha. Early-harvested crops showed good quality, while later crops have seen lower hagbergs and signs of sprouting. Plenty of full-specification milling wheat was harvested prior to the rain, so there is a good supply of wheat for the milling industry. Overall, specific weights average 77kg/hl, protein contents 12.6% and hagbergs 223.
- Spring barley– 80% of the crop is in the barn with yields at 5.9-6.1t/ha, 9-13% above the 10-year average of 5.4t/ha. Quality is good, with average specific weights of 66kg/hl and nitrogen content averaging 1.4%.
- Oats– 95% of the crop is off the field with average yields of 6.1-6.3t/ha, a 7-10% rise on the 10-year average of 5.7t/ha.
- Winter barley– 100% of the crop is harvested with average yields of 7.2-7.4t/ha, a 11-14% rise on the 10-year average of 6.5t/ha. Quality is good, with most malting crops reaching specifications and samples having good specific weights.
- Winter oilseed rape– 100% of the crop is cut, with average yields of 3.6-3.8t/ha, a 7-13% rise on the 10-year average of 3.4t/ha. Quality is generally good with oil contents of 42-48%.