According to MDA Weather Services, wet weather has been causing problems for the wheat crop across major producing countries in the southern Hemisphere this growing season. The most notable problem spot has been eastern Australia, where excessive rainfall in September and October led to disease issues and quality declines for the wheat crop. Kyle Tapley, Senior Ag Meteorologist with MDA Weather Services states, “Much of the wheat producing region in Queensland, New South Wales, and Victoria received more than 250% of normal rainfall from September through October, with some areas seeing as much as four times the normal rainfall during that time period. Drier weather has prevailed over the past few weeks, but rains increased this past weekend in southeastern Australia and another round of rainfall is expected next week, slowing the wheat harvest.” With La Niña conditions in place, above normal rainfall will continue to be favored through the end of the year, which may lead to additional quality declines and slow harvest progress. On the other hand, wetness is not a concern in Western Australia wheat areas and rainfall is expected to be near seasonal levels through the end of the year, which should prevent any notable harvest slowdowns.
In South America, wetness has also been a concern for wheat in some areas, primarily in far southern Brazil and portions of Argentina. “Rainfall was well above normal during October in Rio Grande do Sul in Brazil and in Santa Fe, Cordoba, and La Pampa in Argentina. The wet weather in these areas may have led to some quality declines and also slowed drydown and harvesting of the wheat crop,” according to Tapley. Unlike eastern Australia, however, drier weather is expected over the next 15 days and below normal rainfall is also expected during December. This should ease wetness and allow wheat harvesting to make better progress.
15th Agricultural Weather Conference
MDA Weather Services will be conducting their 15th Annual Spring Agriculture Conference hosted at the offices of CME Group in Chicago on Tuesday, April 4, 2017. Topics and speakers will be announced later this year. For more information, contact Christopher.Hyde@mdaus.com.
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