It seems that Prairie farmers’ periodic attraction for U.S. wheat varieties of uncertain quality is not a recent phenomenon. This item appeared in the January 1886 issue of the Nor-West Farmer.
The Northwestern Miller in a recent editorial says: it may be sad news to the London miller that a large number of Manitoba farmers have formally requested the government to aid them in securing Soft White Spring wheat for seed. They assert that there are varieties which yield well and which will ripen fully 10 days earlier than the Scotch fife now grown, so that all danger from early frosts will be averted. This may be true but we assure our Manitoba neighbours that they will do well to let Soft White Spring wheat alone. They may get an earlier harvest and a fair-size crop, but the wheat will rarely sell for more than Scotch fife which is not too badly frosted, while it will smut and absorb other diseases so that in the end they will greatly suffer from the proposed change. Those Minnesota wheat growers who changed their seed from hard to soft made the most serious blunder of their lives, and many of them are beginning to see and acknowledge this.