A competition to find the country’s best milling wheat grower has been launched by milling association Nabim and UK cereals authority the HGCA.

Judges in the 2012 Milling Wheat Challenge will be looking for farmers who make the best use of soil types and can demonstrate a successful agronomic approach to variety, fertiliser use and fungicides. They will also assess harvest and storage logistics, and producing wheat to the required milling specification.

“UK flour millers are committed to UK wheat and farmers. More than 80% of the wheat we mill comes from UK farmers,” said Martin Savage, Nabim’s trade policy manager. “Growing quality wheat consistently is a difficult task, which requires best practice in growing, storage and delivery to meet the exacting standards of the milling trade.”

HGCA’s arable business manager Pat Thornton said, “HGCA is pleased to be supporting this year’s competition as a way of promoting best practice in both growing and marketing milling wheat. Our focus will be on looking for growers who have a good understanding of their business costs and an ability to reflect that in their marketing.”

The three finalists in the Milling Wheat Challenge 2011 were: James Price from Woodstock in Oxfordshire; Dan and Humphrey Squier, who farm near Rochford, Essex; and Pip Robson from Chathill in Northumberland. The overall winner was James Price.

The closing date for entries will be Friday, 30 April 2012, and the three finalists will be announced at the Cereals Event in June.

The finalists, together with leaders from the UK wheat supply chain, will be invited to a celebration dinner hosted by Nabim at the Ritz Hotel in London, where the winning grower will be announced.

To find out more and to enter go to: www.nabim.org.uk/content/1/24/growing-wheat.html or www.hgca.com/mwc