The Grain column with Emma Croft

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

According to AHDB, winter barley harvesting has got off to a good start nationally this year with the cutting of winter OSR also underway for many.

For winter barley, “initial specific weights are looking good with reports up 70kg/hl in some areas.

Information on yields is limited so far but based on what we have seen, yields look to be close or if not slightly above the five year average”.

As for OSR, “crops are generally in a good condition with little disease, although black grass levels under the canopy have been high, along with thistles and cleavers. Early yields in

Southern and Eastern regions are slightly above the give year average but should probably be treated with caution at this stage in the season.

Locally, I would be inclined to agree with much of the above.

We have seen a couple of samples of feed barley test at 70kg/hl, but we have also seen several samples below the 60kg/hl mark.

Samples of six row varieties have continued to disappoint, but most two row varieties have met the required 63.5kg/hl.

Movement is very good, particularly since the weekend’s wet weather has slowed harvest progress – for those of you with more barley than perhaps expected, please contact the office to discuss movement requirements.

Current values are trading in the region of £115/T+ ex-farm.

We have seen several OSR samples arrive into the office over the last week or so and although I am reluctant to comment on yields at this stage, I think it would be safe to say that all growers have been pleasantly surprised with crop performance.

Quality has also been very good with all samples clean, dry and boasting good oil contents.

Further afield, Hot and dry weather over in Canada is increasing fears for this season’s canola crop – limited rainfall in key producing regions alongside high temperatures appear to be already damaging crops as the majority are currently in the “yield determining” flowering period.

Although Canadian canola plantings are at a record high this year, weather problems have been a common occurrence – it was far too dry during planting, recent temperatures have been on the increase and now they are suffering with a significant moisture deficit.

Dry weather over in Australia (another key canola producer) is also beginning to cause a stir and could be one to watch this week.

Regardless, OSR values have struggled to gain momentum over the last ten days or so - £300/T ex-farm is easily offered for spot collection but values are struggling to be any more than £305/T ex-farm at this stage.