Warburton’s is switching some of its milling wheat requirement from Hereward into Solstice from harvest 2006, with contracts available through Centaur Grain.

But only existing Warburton’s growers will be given the opportunity to take advantage of the premium value contracts, confirmed Centaur’s Richard Jenner.

“The contracts stipulate that certified seed is used, for full traceability,” he said. “We expect that 10% of the Warburton’s total requirement, which was 130,000t last year, will be Solstice next harvest.”

Any expansion in the required tonnage will also be offered to existing participants, he explained.

But rumours persisted that Warburton’s was looking to source half its total requirement as Solstice. “Our understanding is that the company is switching from Hereward to Solstice in a much bigger way, and looking for half of its contracted tonnage to be Solstice,” said a representative from the seed industry

Solstice is preferred by Allied Mills too, which also supports new Group 2 variety Mascot. As a result, seed of Mascot is expected to sell out, taking 4% of the market.

ADM Milling is offering buy back contracts for Cordiale for specialist flours, and is looking for the variety to double its current market share of 2-3%. Also conditional on the use of certified seed, the contracts are paying a minimum of £5/t over the feed wheat price, or £7/t below the Group 1 price, which ever is the greater.

However, the wheat must fall within the catchment areas of Avonmouth, Corby, Knottingly, Liverpool and Tewkesbury.

Another variety being sought by two millers for biscuit making is Group 3 stalwart Consort, the area of which is in decline nationally. A £6/ tonne premium is being offered.