Oilseed rape combining© Tim Scrivener

New crop oilseed rape prices gained further ground in the week to 27 July, despite pressure from weaker soya bean values.

The Farmers Weekly average spot price gained £2.20/t to £279.70/t ex-farm – well above last year, when it stood at £242.40/t.

Around the regions, August values ranged from £273/t ex-farm in North East Scotland, to £284/t in Essex and Hertfordshire.

See also: Currency gives UK grain prices steady gains

Currency remained volatile, adding to fluctuations in UK rapeseed prices, while the first reports from harvest suggested that yields were down by as much as a third.

Across Europe rapeseed production was forecast at its lowest level since 2012, with analyst Oilworld cutting its fortnightly estimate by 400,000t, to 21.15m tonnes.

This was mainly due to low yields reported from French and German harvests, as well as disease pressures in Germany, said a report by AHDB Cereals and Oilseeds. 

Output in some countries (including the UK) is forecast at more than a five-year low.

Although European oilseed rape production looked to be in decline, the excellent US soya bean conditions were generally driving global prices lower.

Yield prospects looked extremely good.

Speculative funds continued to cut their bullish bets on the soya bean markets by liquidating long positions, adding to the soya bean pressure, said a report by market analyst CRM.