Harvest is now humming along in much of western Canada.

  On Friday, the Canadian Wheat Board reported farmers were nearing the 50 percent mark in terms of progress.

    "At the beginning of the week we were around a third done and now we're closer to half done. Here on Friday we're pegging progress at around 48 percent complete, so with good weather over the weekend we'll probably be close to 60 percent by Monday," said Bruce Burnett, director of weather and crop analysis, when reached on Friday while working at his family farm near Binscarth, Manitoba. Even at 60 percent, harvest is normally 88 percent complete by this point in early October.

    He says the symptoms of the delayed harvest are evident. "Certainly the quality has taken a hit from the weather. Number 1 grades, those are now limited in terms of the amount harvest. Still the wheat is holding mostly at a milling grade so we're going to have a wide variety of grades this year...although at the top end there will be a lot less than we've had over the last two or three years," he says.