Local feed marketing options may provide superior returns due to early availability. There are a number of buyers including local feed mills, hog operations, and feedlots.
Standards for feed wheat are generally less comprehensive than for milling wheat and vary by purchaser. Growers should check with specific buyers regarding their requirements. CWRW and General Purpose varieties may all be accepted by the feed and ethanol markets.
Four main quality factors are considered by feed wheat purchasers:
Winter wheat is a low risk to Fusarium (producer of vomitoxin) as its early growth habit allows it to avoid the disease most years. Application of a fungicide registered for Fusarium Head Blight at early heading is an option in years when the risk of disease development is high. Tolerances for vomitoxin range from zero to one ppm depending on the buyer and the end use.
Requirements vary from no minimum to a minimum of 11.0 per cent. For CWRW varieties, protein under 11.0 per cent is an indicator that the crop may not have had enough nitrogen to achieve maximum yield.
- Test Weight
Requirements are variable, but most buyers have minimum requirements of 58 to 60 lbs/bushel.
Winter wheat is dry at 14.5 per cent moisture. Requirements vary, as some buyers stipulate grain must be dry while others accept grain to a maximum of 15.5 per cent moisture.