POLAND IS heading for a record grain harvest this summer, with increased plantings and good crop development already putting pressure on new crop prices.

“Wheat production is expected to top 9.2m tonnes this year compared with 7.8m tonnes last year,” according to Dalgety Polska grain director Tomasz Wika.

“That would give us an 800,000t export surplus.”

The grain maize crop is also looking bigger, with output estimated at up to 3m tonnes – up 20% on harvest 2003.

And oilseed rape production is put at 1.3m tonnes compared with less than 1m tonnes last year.

Mr Wika reckoned Poland will have about 2m tonnes of coarse grains to export, which as caused new crop prices to fall.

Wheat is now quoted at 450 zlotys/t (£64/t) ex-farm. This compares with a spot price in February of 750 zlotys/t (£107/t) and a new crop price at the time of 500 zlotys/t (£72/t).