Meade County Grower Takes Third Place in Kansas National Wheat Yield Contest

January 10, 2017

Grower credits achievement to WestBred® wheat variety

ST. LOUIS, Jan. 10, 2017 – WestBred® wheat is proud to announce Meade County wheat grower, Darwin Ediger, won third place in Kansas in the National Wheat Yield Contest Winter Wheat—Dryland category. The competition, organized by the National Wheat Foundation, champions yield-maximizing practices employed by innovative wheat growers. Ediger placed third in the state after a yield increase of 294.7 percent over the most recent USDA-NASS published county average data.

Ediger achieved a yield of 110.5 bushels per acre with WestBred variety WB4458.

“WB4458 was the variety that I won the Kansas State Yield contest with last year,” Ediger said. “It’s a variety that stands well under intensive management and has the ability to increase grain volume clear up to maturity.”

More than 170 individual growers across wheat-growing counties in the United States entered to compete in four categories: irrigated winter wheat, dryland winter wheat, irrigated spring wheat and dryland spring wheat. Combined, the 14 WestBred national and state winners averaged 136.9 bushels per acre, versus the collective average county yield of 63.3 bushels per acre.

“For me, entering the National Wheat Yield Contest was a good way to challenge myself to look for new ways to improve my production techniques,” Ediger said. “Secondly it’s a vehicle to share things that may be beneficial to other producers and a way to showcase which varieties have superior potential given the opportunity.”

The National Wheat Yield Contest recognized national winners in each category as well as the top three state winners per category. Winners were determined by evaluating the yield percentage increase above the USDA-NASS county averages. The inaugural contest encouraged growers to innovate, exchange knowledge and employ the newest available technology.

Ediger credited the early use of fungicide as one of the more important techniques he used to increase his yield performance.

As a sponsor of the National Wheat Yield Contest, WestBred wheat provide growers with opportunities to succeed in the wheat industry and avenues to exchange successful techniques.

“Innovative techniques, high-performing seed varieties and cutting-edge production practices make planting wheat a more attractive option for growers,” said John Fietsam, Wheat Technical Product Lead for Monsanto.

With commodity prices of wheat fluctuating, growers today need to look for ways to maximize their yield and profit potential, and WestBred wheat is committed to providing solutions for growers.

“Through this contest, we’ve learned different management techniques growers are employing to maximize the proportion of genetic yield potential they harvest from their wheat seed investment,” said Fietsam. “By harnessing the benefits of new technology, the best wheat genetics and innovative production practices, the winning growers have shown the boundaries of wheat yields can be pushed.”

To register for the 2017 National Wheat Yield Contest, growers can visit The registration deadline for winter wheat is May 1, 2017, and the deadline for spring wheat is August 1, 2017.

Wheat growers interested in competing in the contest can also contact their WestBred seed supplier or local WestBred representative. Additional details can be found at

About WestBred Wheat

WestBred wheat provides seed suppliers and their growers access to the highest yield potential wheat seed, as well as testing, education, resources and experienced representatives to help maximize their yield potential.

ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW PESTICIDE LABEL DIRECTIONS. Individual results may vary, and performance may vary from location to location and from year to year. WestBred and Design® and WestBred® are trademarks of Monsanto Technology LLC. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners. ©2017 Monsanto Company.