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2011 Wheat Yield Contest rules set


Wheat producers, get ready for the second annual Kansas Wheat Yield Contest. Sponsored by the Kansas Wheat Commission, Kansas Association of Wheat Growers and BASF, the Wheat Yield Contest not only recognizes the state's top wheat producers, but gives all farmers an opportunity to learn from their peers.

"This contest serves as an informal research project, as we will collect and share data on good management secrets from the winners," says Aaron Harries, Kansas Wheat director of marketing. "Information from the first Wheat Yield Contest will appear in the 2011 'Know Your Wheat' booklet, which will show up at grain elevators prior to harvest."

The contest includes three regions: Region 1 (Western Kansas), Region 2 (Central Kansas) and Region 3 (Eastern Kansas). Entry deadline for the 2011 Wheat Yield Contest is March 20, 2011. Producers achieving the top yield receive a $1,000 cash prize and plaque. Contest winners will be announced next summer.

In 2010, Alvin Schmedemann, Junction City; Danee Helvey, Ellsworth; and Jon Buehler, Scott City, each won $1,000 cash prizes for their participation in the inaugural Kansas Wheat Yield Contest.

New for 2011, farmers will be eligible to participate in a Quality Initiative of the Wheat Yield Contest. Each contest participant will be asked to submit a 5-pound sample of wheat from the contest field. The quality of that sample will be evaluated for quality components such as test weight, protein content, variety and kernel quality. Top scoring samples will be further tested in a quality laboratory, where a small loaf of bread will be baked. The sample with the top quality score will receive a cash prize, too.

"High yields may capture the spotlight, but high quality captures the market," Harries says. "As we learned from the 2010 contest, good yields and quality can go hand in hand with the right management practices."

The March 20 deadline gives wheat farmers an opportunity to gauge the condition of the wheat crop as it breaks dormancy. Folks who enter the contest will be asked to share management information about their farm, including details about tillage and agronomic practices, crop protection products usage and more. A third party verifier will be employed at harvest to ensure the integrity of the contest.

Wheat farmers who are 18 years or older from throughout Kansas are eligible to participate by enrolling a plot at least five acres in size. The $50 entry fee will be used to defray verification costs. Producers may enter more than once, but each entry must be submitted on a separate entry form. Kansas Wheat directors, employees and spouses are prohibited from entering the contest. Contestants must use certified seed. The contest is open only to dryland fields.

For those who are interested in accepting the challenge, more details about the 2011 Kansas Wheat Yield Contest can be found online at www.kansaswheat.org, by requesting an information packet via e-mail at kswheat@kswheat.com, or by writing to Kansas Wheat, 217 Southwind Place, Manhattan, KS 66503.

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