Forward prices for grain top €200/t for 2019 harvest

22.08.2018

Forward prices for the 2019 harvest are being quoted by merchants already as the last of this year’s crops are being wrapped up.

In excess of €200/t is reportedly being talked of for barley, with €380/t being offered for winter oilseed rape.

The oilseed rape price is being offered by Quinns of Baltinglass and is conditional on buying inputs from the merchant. The offer is open till August 31.

David Shortall of Quinns said the forward price offered “certainty for growers” and a guaranteed return for what he described as a “valuable break crop”.

Mr Shortall said that oilseed rape yields this year averaged 1.7-2.2t/ac, which would give a return before costs of €646-836/ac. Quinns buy between 10,000t and 12,000t of oilseed rape each year. Mr Shortall predicted that up to 2,500t could be sourced through the forward scheme.

Meanwhile, the final days of the harvest have brought a mixed bag of yields.

Carlow-based farm consultant, Pat Minnock, said that later crop yields had improved with many first wheats, especially after significant levels of organic manure, performing extremely well at over 5t/ac.

While spring barley yields appear to have also improved to around 2.2-2.6t/ac, some disastrous crops are still being harvested.

I began last month's article by quoting Warren Buffet and his explanation that systemic weaknesses become more apparent during times of trouble (or as he said, 'only when the tide goes out do you discover who has been swimming naked').

Straw output

Growers in Kildare reported crop averages of 2t/ac, with straw output at two to three bales to the acre. “The crop was only two foot high, it was nearly impossible to cut it,” one grower said.

South Tipperary grain grower, Noel Delany, said yields for the last of the spring barley varied from 2.5t/ac back down to 1t/ac.

He said straw yield from the crop averaged four to five bales to the acre, compared to seven or eight bales an acre normally.


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