Quality over quantity
Dry season a challenge for peanut crop yield
THIS year’s peanut crop at Coalstoun Lakes has the quality but not the yield of the previous bumper season.
Darren Rackemann of Rackemann Resources said initially farmers had eight to nine weeks of dry weather before 20 inches at the end of January, and then a further 10-11 in February.
“The crop won’t be like last year, which was exceptional with quality, quantity and price,” he said.
“While the yield won’t be there, the crop still looks like going 1.3 to 1.5 tonnes an acre.
“Growers can expect up to $900 per tonne.”
As well as being down in yield, the acreage planted is also down, due the dry conditions at planting time.
Mr Rackemann said it had been one of the most challenging years with dry, then very wet and then dry.
“It would be great to have some normality,” he said.
“Last year was exceptional, even though we grew our crop on a fraction of the rain. But the important thing was it rained when needed.
“Even the corn went 3.5 tonne to the acre, but this won’t be repeated this year, especially if there is a dry finish,” he said
There were wet spots in places in the peanut crop, which wasn’t a problem, but the problem came with the wash from the heavy rain causing digging problems getting the crop out.
“We could be worse off. At least we have a harvest,” he said.
The wet also brought other problems, with areas of mould, but this was patchy.
The Rackemanns are chomping at the bit to see what new Peanut Company of Australia variety Fisher produces.
“It is a new variety to us and may be worth $1350 per tonne for nut in shell.
“It is looking exceptionally good so long as the weather conditions are in our favour,” he said.
Growers are looking for dry weather for the next month, but on the other hand would like some rain to finish the corn off.
“We really are hard to please,” Mr Rackemann said.
NEW SEASON: A thresher harvesting peanuts at Coalstoun Lakes.