19 January 1996

Choose OSR wisely and lift returns

GROWING the right variety and managing it carefully can boost returns on industrial rape grown on set-aside by £80/ha (£32/acre), it is claimed.

Gross margins are over £200/ha (£81/acre) lower for industrial crops compared with conventional ones, says Paul Hickman of Zeneca Seeds.


Good disease resistance can close the gap by over £30/ha (£12/acre), he explains. Varieties should also be easy to cut direct, with little risk of lodging or shedding. They should be consistent, he adds. "Margins are too tight to leave anything to chance."

Further savings can be made by reducing nitrogen inputs, as less of the crop revenue comes from yield, he adds. &#42