IFA point to difficult harvest, as yields have remained very variable

Barley, oats, tonnage down but the real hit is on wheat this year
IFA point to difficult harvest, as yields have remained very variable

It has been a difficult year for harvesting crops but hope remains high that the total Irish main cereal harvest will come in somewhere between 1.9 and 1.95 million tonnes.

After a very difficult harvest there are pockets of spring crops still to be finished along with most of the beans.

Yields have remained very variable.

Some of the Spring barley crops were promising good late yield potential, however the continuation of the broken weather scuppered this hope for a lot of farmers.

And the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) is reporting this week that it is likely that the total Irish main cereal harvest will come in somewhere between 1.9 and 1.95 million tonnes.

“While total barley and oats tonnage are down on last year, the real hit is on wheat, which will be down over 200,000 tonnes on 2019,” the organisation added.

The global wheat harvest is forecast to show a 24 million surplus, however, the trend in the world markets is bullish

Meanwhile, in the UK, further weakness in sterling has made barley more competitive on international markets.

But, due to the major reduction in wheat production, the UK will not have the same barley surplus for export as last season and the crop is currently trading at nearly a 25% discount to wheat, compared to a five-and 20-year average of 7.5%.

And, on the international front, following last week’s United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimates - which revised world wheat production upwards - wheat futures initially weakened.

“However, they have jumped over 3% in two days following the trend in maize and soybeans,” IFA added.

“The global wheat harvest is forecast to show a 24 million surplus, however, the trend in the world markets is bullish, based on anticipation of increased demand.

“Chicago corn (maize) futures have continued to climb as the USDA estimates again revised production lower and Chinese purchases continue.

“US soybean futures market has risen by 15% in the past month and is now at a two year high.

“The USDA reduced soybean production by 2.5% in its recent forecast, while Chinese purchases continue at record levels.

“Rapeseed futures have also strengthened in combination with all commodities in the oil and protein complex. In addition, the revised lower figures for rapeseed output in Canada and the Ukraine have helped firm prices.”

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