Stripe rust pressure ‘severe’ in Northwest wheat, expert says

From the Capital Press Stripe rust pressure this year is “severe to extremely severe” in Pacific Northwest wheat, but most farmers have been able to control it by growing resistant varieties or by applying fungicides. USDA Agricultural Research Service plant geneticist Xianming Chen blames the mild winter, which allowed the rust to survive and develop in winter wheat. “Stripe rust ... Read More »

Rain, temperatures increase falling number concerns

From the Capital Press Rain and temperature fluctuations are worrying some in the Pacific Northwest wheat industry about sprout damage that could reduce the price farmers receive for their crop. If the weather clears up without additional storms, “then maybe it’s not going to be that big a disaster,” said Camille Steber, USDA ARS research plant molecular geneticist in Pullman, ... Read More »

WAWG’s 2015/16 year in review…

The past 12 months have brought a poor harvest, drought, fires and fights (the political kind, mostly). Through it all, the Washington Association of Wheat Growers’ (WAWG) leadership team, executive board and committee chairs and staff, have spent countless hours on the phone participating in conference calls with state agencies and contacting our federal delegation to ask for support on ... Read More »

The rise and fall of farmland values.

Between 2010 and 2015, change in inflation-adjusted average farm real estate values (the value of farmland and buildings) varied widely across the 48 contiguous states. The value of farm real estate is expected to change over time to reflect changes in expectations for income streams from future use—including both agriculture and nonagricultural uses. Over 2010-15, the largest state percentage increases ... Read More »

Recent weather could affect wheat quality

From As wheat harvest gets started in Washington, recent rainfall and cool temperatures have some growers worried about Mother Nature’s fickle ways with their crop.  Rainfall close to harvest can result in preharvest sprouting, which can negatively affect wheat quality. Dr. Camille Steber, USDA-ARS plant geneticist, explains the potential effects of recent rains on this year’s wheat crop and ... Read More »

NASS production report forecasts 19 percent increase from 2015

According to the NASS Crop Production Report released yesterday, winter wheat production is forecast at 1.63 billion bushels, up 8 percent from the June 1 forecast and up 19 percent from 2015. Based on July 1 conditions, the United States yield is forecast at a record high 53.9 bushels per acre, up 3.4 bushels from last month and up 11.4 bushels ... Read More »

Washington Policy Center targets agriculture

Editor’s Note: The Washington Policy Center (WPC) is a nonprofit organization that researches relevant public policy issues and offers practical commonsense recommendations. A few months ago, Chris Cargill, the WPC’s Eastern Washington director, took a look at the state’s agricultural industry and the value it adds to Washington state in a white paper available on WPC’s website. By Chris Cargill Washington ... Read More »

Voters to decide fate of carbon tax initiative this November

By Diana Carlen WAWG Lobbyist This November, Washington voters will decide whether Washington state will be the first state in the nation to enact a carbon tax. The proposal, known as Initiative 732 (I-732), was drafted by a grassroots citizens group called Carbon Washington. I-732 imposes an initial $15 tax on carbon emissions from fossil fuels sold or used in ... Read More »

Farm Bureau disputes WSU’s upbeat take on carbon tax

From the Capital Press Carbon tax proponents are calling attention to a Washington State University study that concluded Initiative 732 on the November ballot would slightly boost the state’s farm economy. The study, led by Gregmar Galinato of the WSU School of Economic Sciences, concludes that an increase in the cost of fuel and other goods would be more than ... Read More »

Ecology stops by Spokane County meeting to talk about Hangman Creek watershed

A meeting of the Spokane County Wheat Growers was held June 20 in Airway Heights. The main topic of discussion was the Hangman Creek watershed. Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology) representatives were in attendance to gather producer input and maintain open dialogue in response to a current lawsuit and media attention. The Spokane Riverkeepers, an environmental group, has filed ... Read More »