UK wheat imports to top 3M/T for the 2012-13 Season

London feed wheat prices have taken a rather quiet turn over the last seven days and values for both old and new crop wheat ex the farm remain unchanged on the week previous.

For old crop feed wheat, values are currently trading somewhere in the low £160’s/T ex-farm position for July collection. Feed barley should in theory be worth a £10/t discount to feed wheat but trade is thin and predominantly farm to farm based.

As for anything with quality, buyers are thin at the minute as the majority of end-users continue to be well covered ahead of this year’s potentially late harvest; well covered with “foreign stuff”.

The latest UK import / export data from HMR&C is finally in for the month of April 2013 and has confirmed that a further 256,000/T of wheat arrived here in the UK, whilst just 28,000/T of wheat was exported. Total wheat imports for the current season so far (from 1st July 2012 to 30th April 2013) stand at a staggering 2.4M/T – more than three times the amount we had imported by the same point last season.

Although it is yet to be confirmed by HMR&C, May and June (the last two months of the 2012-2013 trading season) are believed to have seen a further 550,000-600,000/T of wheat imported into the country. If correct, that would take the current season’s wheat import total to almost 3M/T – not exactly the best of news for those of you hoping for a reoccurrence of last year’s “last minute July price rally”.

Meanwhile new crop feed wheat is currently making similar money to old crop with £165/T ex-farm available for November collection. Those of you looking for Movement off the combine would probably have to take around £5/T less at this stage. New crop values are now around £30/T lower than their pre-Christmas levels and compared to its European equivalent, it still looks expensive. Domestic millers can currently buy full specification French soft wheat ex the dock for just a couple of pounds per tonne more than UK feed wheat ex the farm.

Elsewhere, this year’s Black Sea grain harvest is beginning to gather pace (around ten days earlier than normal), particularly in Southern Russia were the winter barley tonnage is already approaching the 1M/T mark. Average yields are so far said to be around the 4.5T/Ha mark, which if correct would mean a 50% improvement on last year’s yield.

Twitter based rumours have suggested that combines are already in winter wheat in the South-East with yields ‘almost twice those of last year’ (this year’s winter wheat crop is expected to come in at a massive 55M/T). This is however hugely speculative, it will probably be another couple of weeks before we have anything more concrete announced by the Agricultural Ministry over there.


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