Continued unsettled weather over the last fortnight, with heavy rain at times, has caused disruption in harvest progress across most of the UK. Where combines have been active, crop yields have been somewhat variable.
However, cereal and oilseed rape (OSR) yields are up between 5-10 per cent on average compared to last year, according to AHDB.
However AHDB Recommended Lists results from Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire and Norfolk show a wheat yield average of 10.87t/ha (4.4t/acre), just below the five-year average of 11.01t/ha (4.5t/acre).
Philip Partridge, who farms near Ipswich, Suffolk, has completed wheat harvest. He says: “We had Marston as a first wheat - It did ok but not as good as we had hoped, averaging the high 8s [t/ha] and low 9s. The second wheats did better at just over 10t/ha.
“Bushel weights averaged between 76-78kg/hl. The highest moisture content was just under 17 per cent and little wheat was harvested at below 15 per cent.”
Tundra winter beans were cut on August 19 and performed well averaging 6.5t/ha (2.6t/acre) according to Mr Partridge.
North Nottinghamshire farmer and agronomist, Andrew Wells finished his wheat at the weekend [August 20] and had only some spring barley to complete. “Like so many people we had some very good yields and some very poor ones – all down to soil type, drought and conditions beyond our control, but overall about average”.
He is concerned about specific weights being a little down, but pleased with yields which have averaged over 9.8t/ha (4t/acre) for feed varieties on what he described as ‘the decent land’ and about 25 per cent less for milling varieties on lighter soils.
He comments that there is not a lot of ‘top class’ malting barley around at the moment. “It is a bit marginal on nitrogen levels, so the maltsters may have to revise their requirements,” he adds.