A new Guinness World Record for the highest wheat yield has been set.
Eric Watson, a farmer in Ashburton, New Zealand, broke the world record for his 2020 crop, which yielded 17.39t/ha (7.03t/ac).
The result breaks the previous record of 16.79t/ha (6.79t/ac) from 2017, which was also held by Eric.
Eric grows a wide variety of crops, consisting of around one third wheat, one third ryegrass and one third other crops, including spinach, chicory, radish and more.
This balance will shift depending on the rotation and conditions. This last season, for example, saw his grass crop account for over 40% of his total area.
Commenting on the achievement, Eric remained modest and said: “The weather was very kind to us, it was never too hot, and we had cold, dewy nights. The wheat varieties also change and are always getting bigger. It all adds up.”
Eric was clear that attention to detail and planning come first. Careful monitoring of wheat varieties, soil analysis, tissue testing and using the right products all come together in a well-rounded strategy that produces his results.
“We’re always trying to get better yields,” adds Eric. “That’s the aim. We’ll see how we go.”