Lessons Learned in Growing Oklahoma Canola Industry Shared at US Canola MeetingTue, 12 Nov 2013 15:27:37 CST
A panel of growers and industry representatives of the Oklahoma canola industry talked about how Oklahoma has grown the winter canola business from a few thousand acres to approximately 300,000 acres for the 2014 crop. The panel was a part of the Fall Board of Director's meeting of the US Canola Association, meeting in downtown Oklahoma CIty this week.
One of those on the panel was the Assistant Manager for the Kingfisher Wheel Brothers Grain Elevator, Randall Varnell. Varnell explained how Kingfisher County farmers embraced canola with some reluctance in the early days- with the relationship warming up rapidly in the last couple of years.
Varnell told Farm Director Ron Hays that one or two producers in an area would try a few acres, then the next year they would expand their acres with their neighbors watching and the next year would often see those neighbors giving canola a try in one or two small fields. Now, up and down the major roads in the county- you find field after field of what has been wheat planted to canola.
Varnell says it has been a learning curve- and the thing that has kept many farmers in his community on the sidelines is the need to swath canola before running the combine through the field. Varnell says if we could get canola to a point where it could be straight cut- many more farmers would step up and include canola in there operation.
You can hear the full conversation that Hays and Varnell had by clicking on the LISTEN BAR below.
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