22 September 1995

Beans remain buoyant

A SMALLER harvest and strong demand from Mediterranean countries for September and October delivery are combining to keep bean prices buoyant.

Reduced plantings and dry weather mean that bean output has fallen 20% to 400,000t, according to Dalgety commercial manager Trevor Harriman. Average UK yield is put at 3.1t/ha (1.3t/acre).

With spot prices now at about £123/t, they are becoming less competitive as a protein source and Polish beans are becoming more attractive to compounders, he said. "In the value-added market, there is still good demand from Egypt, but once again we have Bruchid beetle infestation which may limit supply," he added.

Feed pea values, meanwhile, are lagging behind beans at about £115/t. Available supplies are similar to last years at 300,000t and quality has held up well. Best samples are fetching about £150/t.