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A Market for Wheat Sprouting in the Head

From: Randy Weisz – Small Grains Specialist

Wheat that has sprouted in the head is turning up all over North Carolina.  At some locations, as many as 1 in 3 grain loads arriving at buying points  have had extremely high levels of sprouting and very low test weight. Murphy Brown decided over the past weekend that they would purchase wheat that has sprouted and have ramped up facilities to handle it. They have instituted the following guidelines:

1) Spouted grain will be treated just like any other "foreign matter".
2) The discount for foreign matter has been extended from a maximum of 10% to a new maximum of 20%.
3) The discount for test weight has been extended from a minimum of 50 lb/bushel to a new minimum of 40 lb/bushel.
4) This policy is being honored at all Murphy Brown's feed mills.
5) Some elevators may sometime take grain that has sprouted, but growers should not count on elevators to meet these new standards.

Contact local Murphy Brown buyers for more information.


An adendum to the above information from Randy Weisz:

Last night, I sent an e-mail letting folks know that there is a market for  sprouted wheat. In the hours since, I've learned that there are many elevators and mills purchasing low test weight, and sprouted wheat grain. Growers with sprouted wheat should check with their local buyers to find out what options are available to them in their area. The good news is that there are multiple markets for this grain, and growers should not give up on this crop even if it is starting to sprout.

To further clarify the earlier e-mail; point numbers 1 – 5 specifically referred to Murphy Brown restrictions on their elevators and mills as was described to me earlier yesterday. Other companies will certainly have their own purchasing policies and guidelines, and there are many elevators and mills that are purchasing sprouted grain. My sincere apologies to the millers and elevator operators for the misleading wording of these points.

Again: wheat growers should not give up on their crop, they have many options for marketing their sprouted grain, and should call their local buyers for details. is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.