Millers look abroad for quality wheat

Millers are increasingly looking to imported wheat to make up for this year’s poor specific weights, according to David Sheppard at Gleadell Agriculture.

“Wheat quality ranges from fair to moderate to appalling – we are seeing bushel weights down into the mid-50s in some samples.”

At that level store managers would have to clean and blend the wheat with better quality parcels, to try and create a usable average, he said.

“It’s a massive sorting job for the whole industry: working out what you have got and allocating the correct quality to the end user is key.”

Some parcels of wheat were so poor that cleaning them would result in significant weight loss overall, he added.

“There are no winners. Quite a large percentage of group one and two varieties are usable, but some of the millers are moving increasingly to imported wheat, which has better flour extraction levels.”

Most millers were accepting wheat down to 72kg/hl, with some taking as low as 70kg/hl, said Mr Sheppard.

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