Spot wheat markets have risen by £4/t over the past week, buoyed by strong demand for feed wheat and greater optimism in the financial markets.

Feed wheat settled at about £169/t ex-farm, depending on location, but milling wheat premiums remained under pressure at just £5/t over feed, with ample supplies of good quality wheat keeping millers well stocked.

In contrast, feed beans fell by £8/t over the week, having reached a massive £72/t premium over feed wheat, with peas dropping by £7/t to about £218/t ex-farm. “Prices just went up too much compared with other commodities,” said Alan Wymer from Saxon Agriculture. “I think we could see another drop next week.” Oilseed rape values also dropped by £5/t, to about £383/t ex-farm.

Beneficial rain across Europe pulled new crop markets down by about £2/t, with November wheat futures settling at £153.50/t on Tuesday (17 April), equivalent to about £146/t ex-farm. However, frost damage and drought had taken their toll, with Spanish production likely to drop by 25%, according to the Spanish Agriculture Ministry.

In the USA, maize plantings were progressing well, with 17% planted as of 15 April, up from 7% the previous week and the 5% five-year average.

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