Now published in its 36th edition, John Nix’s Farm Management Pocketbook has been updated for 2006.

But fears of production shrinking under CAP reform have yet to be borne out, says Prof Nix.

“Despite the enormity of the change, the impact on production in 2005 would appear to be extremely small.”

Based on an improved average milk price of 18.25p/litre, gross margins per cow are slightly better at £610-£918, depending on yield and based on two cows per forage acre.

Barley margins have been improved by £30/ha to £135/ha, based on a harvest price this season of £63/t for feed quality grain – up £3/t on last year’s value.

Gross margins for winter wheat fall by £5/ha to £195/ha, reflecting increases in variable costs such as seed, fertiliser and sprays.

Winter and spring oilseed rape margins are unchanged.