By Johann Tasker in Lincolnshire
FARMERS looking to make more money from grain should grow for the market, visitors to the Cereals 98 event were told today.
Although markets are complex , there are really only four principal outlets open to cereal farmers, Jim Reed, director general of UKASTA told his audience in Sleaford, Lincolnshire.
“Its important to know which market youre growing for before the crop is even planted,” Mr Reed said, adding that growers should choose between growing for malting, milling, feed, or export.
Twenty years ago the Common Agricultural Policy encouraged farmers to produce cereals without worrying about where it would be sold, he added.
“Id strongly suggest that those day, if not already ove, are certainly numbered,” Mr Reed said. “In the future, markets wont be supported by intervention.”
Lower prices and the Agenda 2000 proposals for CAP reform mean that markets in the future will be much more volatile. As a result, good marketing is now vital in the quest for higher cereal profits.
Tracking regional and world markets and gathering will help farmers forecast where prices are going and which of the four markets to grow for, Mr Reed said. But forward selling grain and the strategic use of the grain futures market will also iron out any extreme price movements.