October 13, 2014

13/10/2014: 2014 Crop Quality Seminars

With the US wheat harvest nearly being completed, it is time for inviting you to our 2014 Crop Quality Seminars, says US Wheat Associates in a recent press release .


The seminars will update you on this year’s wheat grade and quality characteristics of the new US wheat crop and on the world wheat supply and demand situation. The seminar will take about two to three hours and will be followed by an informal luncheon / reception function. 

Below please find a table including the schedule of the 2014 Crop Quality Seminars indicating starting time and venue.


Mr David Hahn, PhD in Food Science and Director of Technical Services and Business Development at Northern Crops Institute (NCI) will discuss the wheat grade and quality characteristics of the 2014 Hard Red Spring and Durum wheat crop. Dr Hahn has over 30 years of experience in research, manufacturing, product development and technical support at several American food companies. He is currently President of the American Association of Cereal Chemists.

Other presenters are Mr Goris van Lit, Regional Director Europe, and Mr Rutger Koekoek, Marketing Specialist of US Wheat Associates, Rotterdam. Their presentations will amongst others include an overview of the supply and demand situation for wheat in the USA and the world.

You can sign up free of charge by sending an e-mail to InfoRotterdam@uswheat.org. Please include the following details in your e-mail: (1) the seminar city of your choice, (2) company name, and (3) participant name(s). Or contact the U.S. Wheat Associates office in Rotterdam by either phone +31 10 413 9155 or fax +31 10 433 0438.

Variable Quality in 2014 U.S. SRW, HRS and Durum Crop
The world may be full of wheat this year, but the availability and condition of that wheat are factors the world’s wheat buyers must also consider.

Every major wheat producing country in the northern hemisphere had quality issues in the 2014 crop, and the U.S. wheat crop was no exception this year. Especially the quality of US Soft Red Winter (SRW), Hard Red Spring (HRS) and Durum has been affected by adverse weather conditions during the growing and harvest season.

Buyers are therefore encouraged to construct specifications carefully to be sure that they receive qualities that meet their needs.

Soft Red Winter Wheat
The 2014 SRW production, estimated at 12.5 MMT, is down nearly 3 MMT from the large 2013 crop, but is about 1 MMT larger than the previous five-year average.

The main quality issue of this year’s SRW crop is the elevated DON level in the Gulf Port states, where most of the SRW is produced. The overall DON average of 2.2 ppm is higher than 2013 and the five-year average. The DON average for the six Gulf Port states is 2.5 ppm, well above 2013 and the five-year average. DON levels are highest in wheat from southern Illinois and Indiana and eastern Kentucky. Wheat farmers in Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky experienced more rain at flowering so DON levels in that wheat are higher. The DON levels are completely different in the three East Coast states with an average of 0.6 ppm, which is below 2013 and the five-year average. East Coast states include Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia.

The overall average SRW grade for 2014/15 is US No 2, though the overall average test weight just barely meets the No. 2 grade requirement. Average protein is slightly lower than last year and the five-year average. Average dockage and total defects are both below last year and the five-year averages, indicating that the crop has relatively few visual defects. Falling number values are again below the five-year average, though somewhat better than the very low values of the 2013 crop. The samples from Gulf Port states show the adverse effects of excessive moisture during growing and harvest while the East Coast states largely avoided these conditions.

The overall average test weight of 76.3kg/hl is 0.8 kg/hl below the five-year average. The Gulf Port average test weight of 76.1kg/hl is below the five-year average for these states, while the East Coast average of 77.3kg/hl is similar to the five-year average. The average total defects value of 1.8% is 1.0 percentage point lower than last year and 0.4 percentage point below the five-year average.

Wheat protein content of 9.8% on a 12% moisture basis is slightly below the five-year average of 10.1%. Wheat falling number of 304 seconds for the Gulf Ports is similar to the low value of 2013 and well below the five-year average. Grain handlers and others are reporting very low falling numbers in wheat from far southern Gulf Port states. In contrast, the average falling number of 340 seconds for the East Coast states is well above the five-year average.

Hard Red Spring Wheat
The 2014 HRS production, estimated at 14.4 MMT, is up 1 MMT from the 2013 crop, and is about 0.7 MMT larger than the previous five-year average.

Excellent early season growing conditions and a cool summer led to very high yields. The harvest was delayed due to slow crop maturity and a cool, wet last half of August and early September. 

Buyers of HRS should expect lower-than-average aggregate protein and vitreous kernel counts in this crop, but strong grade features, because the overall average grade for 2014/15 is U.S. No. 1 Northern Spring (NS).

Given the diverse growing region and variable weather conditions, there is higher protein available, but it is selling at a premium. Traditional customers who demand a 13.5 to 14 percent protein HRS wheat or higher will likely face market premiums through most of the 2014/15 market year as supplies of high-protein wheat on the world market grow smaller.

There are isolated pockets of lower falling numbers and higher DON values but the crop overall reflects sound quality values. The average protein level slipped to 13.4 percent on a 12% moisture basis which compares to 13.6 percent last year. The crop has an average falling number of 368 seconds, down from 421. The average vitreous kernel counts are 57 percent, well below the traditional levels for hard red spring wheat and well below last year’s average vitreous kernel counts of 73 percent. Vitreous kernel counts were impacted by the lower average protein levels in parts of the crop and the frequent rains received during harvest across the region.Test weights have fallen slightly since the start of harvest, but still hold at a historically strong level of 80.0 kg/hl, but down from the 2013 average of 81.9 kg/hl.

DON levels are higher than recent years for the crop overall, but DON seems to have affected the earliest portion of the crop, and the southeast part of the 4 state region (Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota) the most.

Durum Wheat
The 2014 durum production, estimated at 1.66 MMT, is about the same as the 2013 crop, and is about 26% smaller than the previous five-year average of 2.23 MMT.

The growing season has been favorable, but harvest conditions in the Northern Durum areas have been challenging.

The impact of the September rains on durum wheat quality is reflected in lower color, some bleaching and lower falling numbers, and some areas are showing higher damage levels due to disease pressures. Based on analysis of 75 percent of the crop, average quality data has the crop at a No 2 Amber Durum (AD), with a greater than normal percentage of the crop slipping to lower grades and vitreous kernel counts. The average protein level is 13.3 percent on a 12% moisture basis, up slightly from last year’s 13.1 percent with the average vitreous kernel count of 74 percent, well below last year's 87 percent. Average test weight is 76.9kg/hl, down from 79.7kg/hl last year and the average falling number is 294 seconds, also below last year's 384 seconds.

Meet US Wheat Associates on October 17, Hamburg
On October 17, US Wheat Associates will be present at the 54th European Commodities Exchange in Hamburg. We look forward to welcoming you in our booth and informing you about US wheat markets and qualities. 

Read more HERE.

The Global Miller
This blog is maintained by The Global Miller staff and is supported by the magazine GFMT
which is published by Perendale Publishers Limited.

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