Just in time for spring fieldwork season in the tractor, Kansas Wheat is proud to announce the launch of the newest broadcast in town — the “Wheat’s on Your Mind” podcast.
Hosted by Aaron Harries, Kansas Wheat vice president of research and operations, the biweekly broadcast will discuss wheat research projects, the latest in the domestic and global wheat markets, policy news like tracking the coming Farm Bill, wheat crop conditions, management decisions and more.
“Wheat’s on Your Mind is meant to be both educational and entertaining, showcasing the stories and people in the wheat world,” Harries said. “We’re excited for the wide array of audiences it will reach from millers to consumers and everyone in between.”
Harries kicked off the first episode with a two-part discussion with Romulo Lollato, a wheat production specialist with K-State Research and Extension. Lollato is a well-known voice in the Kansas wheat industry, sharing the latest in his ongoing research into wheat management strategies and the meteorological limits to winter wheat productivity in the southern Great Plains. He currently oversees 20 different research projects related to wheat production or applied wheat physiology.
“If you’ve been to a wheat meeting in Kansas, you’ll definitely recognize Romulo’s voice,” Harries said. “We sit down to chat about Romulo growing up in Brazil, how his passion for extension work really took hold, how he ended up at Oklahoma State University and what eventually brought him here to K-State.”
Part one of the podcast focuses less on Lollato’s agronomic expertise and more on giving listeners a deeper glimpse into where he grew up in Brazil and how his father’s work in research shaped his views on disseminating research directly to the farmers who can put that research into practice.
“We have research institutions that do research and my dad was in one of those,” Lollato shared. “By his nature, he was an extension guy and he was just telling things in a way that it was fun for growers to learn. But he was an outlier in that sense that he was doing a lot more extension than he was getting credit for because in Brazil that was done by a completely separate person than the one doing the research.”
Following part two of Harries’ chat with Lollato will be a conversation with Rollie Sears, retired K-State and AgriPro wheat breeder and current president of Prairie View Genetics. The pair will be discussing the development of Jagger, one of the most widely planted and best parent varieties of hard red winter wheat.
Sears made the initial cross for Jagger at K-State and has tracked the variety’s pedigree into popular varieties planted today, including Everest, Joe and Tatanka. Tune in to learn more about how this Jagger came to be and the importance of investing grower dollars into wheat breeding programs.
Kansas Wheat will be promoting individual episodes on the organization’s social media channels, but listeners should subscribe so they don’t miss any of the excitement. Listeners can tune in wherever they listen to podcasts, including Apple or Spotify. Or check out the podcast’s website at wheatsonyourmind.com.