The Grain Column with Emma Croft

Emma Croft, farm trader at Anderson Grain Marketing Ltd.
Emma Croft, farm trader at Anderson Grain Marketing Ltd.

Both old crop and new crop feed wheat values have continued to rise this week as the value of the pound continues to decline.

Old crop feed wheat for spot collection is currently valued in the region of £137/T –£138/T while movement into the New Year is bid at £140/T ex-farm.

Looking ahead, it is difficult to judge the overall direction of the old crop grain market. We are seeing a few weather issues begin to emerge from various corners of the globe but these are extremely theoretical and there is nothing to suggest a short term supply issue. As for currency movements, your guess is a good as mine!

Next week’s all important American election could alter the value of the dollar whilst opinion is split regarding the value of sterling – some suggest it could devalue further as we edge closer to a ‘Brexit’ whilst the slight growth in the UK economy since the Referendum could suggest a rebound.

As for new crop values, £140/T ex-farm is currently being offered for November 2017 collection.

It appears to be a popular sell and as I have advised many local growers, even if this ends up being your lowest sell for next year’s crop is definitely isn’t a bad place to start marketing it.

Feed barley is currently valued in the region of £115/T ex-farm for September 2017 collection. This season’s European winter sowing campaign has got off to a “reasonable” start according to the latest crop monitoring bulletin from the EU commission although the report is largely mixed.

Whilst western areas such as France and Germany battled with excessive rainfall throughout August followed by much drier conditions in September, Eastern areas have experienced the opposite. A dry harvest followed by a wet October appears to have hindered planting progress in some parts of Romania and Poland.

Overall planting progress is therefore slightly behind schedule although crops that are in the ground are said to be establishing ‘slowly but surely’.

This could be worth a watch over the coming few weeks – it may be early days yet but any shortfalls with regard to planting intentions could benefit the market.

Further afield, having already been hit by above average rainfall in the past month or so, the Australian wheat crop has fallen subject to further weather woes this week. Extensive frost damage is now believed to have damaged around 20% of the total grain crop, which could lower overall output by as much as three million tonnes.

Western Australia is believed to be particularly at risk of Frost Damage – it is also one of the largest contributing areas to grain production.