Variable Weather Conditions & Quality Concerns
For the nation’s breadbasket, flip-flopping growing conditions have prevailed. From flooded plantings to ideal sun and heat, cool moisture-laden periods and even pockets of drought…throw in a few hailstorms and blizzards, and the 2019 growing season is shaping up to be one of the most volatile in recent memory.
That makes it difficult to guess what yield and quality metrics might look like. We heard about crops planted late, but nearly caught up by harvest time. About corn ears filling so fast they were busting out of the husks. Concern that late heat and rapid maturing would impact soybean sizes as well as oil and protein content.
USDA estimates on crop quality reflect the effects of this volatility on corn and soy specifically, with the percentage of each reported as in good or very good condition at the lowest point in 5 years.
The variability of weather conditions makes it extremely hard to predict whether a mycotoxin outbreak is looming on the horizon. The truth is there is no reliable predictor, but there are some conditions conducive to proliferation. And this year, we’ve seen them all!
The only way to ensure mycotoxins don’t make it into streams where they don’t belong is to test for them. And there’s no safety any more in presuming that some toxin that’s not usually found in your area isn’t there…too many folks have found out the hard way that it’s just not the case anymore.