Harvest now 85% through, says HGCA

Unsettled weather slowed combining progress to 300,000ha in the week to 2 September, bringing the total harvest to 85% complete.

Despite this year’s early start to harvest, progress was now on par with the five-year average, according to the latest HGCA / ADAS report.

“Over the past week most crops harvested required drying, with moisture contents of cereal crops averaging 17%,” it said.

Winter wheat harvest was now 90% complete, and yields remained above average at 8.4-8.6t/ha.

“Crops have tended to yield well across all soil types due to adequate moisture during the spring and summer, with crops grown on heavier land typically yielding 10-12t/ha and lighter soils yielding 8.5-9.5t/ha.”

Later harvested crops after rain were now showing signs of quality deteriorating, with a decline in Hagberg Falling Numbers, it added. “Some samples processed over the past week have started to look dull.

Specific weights were averaging 76kg/hl, with Hagbergs at 264 seconds, and protein 12%.

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Spring barley harvest was now 65% complete, with 80% cut in England and Wales and 45% combined in Scotland.

“Yields to date have been good, with the current national average yield estimated at 5.9-6.1t/ha,” said the report.

Most malting crops were meeting specification, although nitrogen contents and specific weights were on the low side, averaging 1.4% and 65kg/hl, respectively.

“Some spring barley crops in Scotland have shown increased levels of lodging over the last week and should be a priority to harvest.”

Oat harvest was 80% through, with most winter crops in the barn and good progress being made with spring crops.

Yields were good, averaging 5.8-6.1t/ha, with all soils performing well, it added. “Overall, quality of oat crops is good, but some of the late harvested winter crops look dull in colour, with low specific weights.”

Spring oilseed rape harvest was now 3% complete, and initial yields were above average at 2.1t/ha.

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