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National Program 306: Product Quality and New Uses
USDA ARS Wheat Quality Laboratories
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USDA ARS Wheat Quality Laboratories

 The United States is the fourth largest producer of wheat in the world (now behind Russia) with an annual production of 55 million metric tons in 2014, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The total harvested US wheat acreage in 2016 was 43.9 million in 2016 down from the high of 56 million in 2008 (source: National Association of Wheat Growers).

The USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) conducts wheat quality research through four strategically-located regional Wheat Quality Laboratories (WQLs) as part of the National Program in Quality and Utilization of Agricultural Products.  Each WQL focuses on wheat types commonly grown in its region:

The mission of the USDA ARS Wheat Quality Laboratories is to advance the quality and utilization of wheat grain in the U.S. for the betterment of U.S. consumers, farmers, and milling, baking, and processing industries. 

 Below are links to summary descriptions for each laboratory.


/ARSUserFiles/np306/WheatQualityLabs/Western Wheat Quality _web1.jpg  

Western Wheat Quality Laboratory (WWQL)

Pullman, Washington




/ARSUserFiles/np306/WheatQualityLabs/Hard Winter_web.jpg

Hard Winter Wheat Quality Laboratory (HWWQL)

Manhattan, Kansas



/ARSUserFiles/np306/WheatQualityLabs/Hard Spring and Durum Wheat Quality_web.JPG  

Hard Spring and Durum Wheat Quality Laboratory (HSDWQL)

Fargo, North Dakota




/ARSUserFiles/np306/WheatQualityLabs/Soft Wheat Quality_web.jpg  Soft Wheat Quality Laboratory (SWQL)

Wooster, Ohio




Click here to see guidelines for wheat sample assessments.