Taken from HGCA weekly MI Bulletin|
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Lack of export awards keeps EU market quiet HGCA
Tuesday, 22 February, 2000
Most EU grain prices started the week on a quiet note. A lack of open-market export awards at the tender of 10 February largely set the tone for the week.
It has been reported that demand for standard -quality wheat in the EU is limited, but demand for higher-quality wheat has been steady. France sold 150,000 tonnes to Tunisia last week, and saw a Moroccan tender for 70,000 tonnes as well. Despite this, French wheat prices ended the week lower.
The US Department of Agriculture has lowered its figures for EU wheat exports for the 1999/00 season to 14.5 million tonnes, of which 1m tonnes were exported in January alone.
EU malting barley prices were generally up for the week as a result of healthy demand. The European malt market is said to be picking up, with news of prospective buyers entering the market.
Portuguese cereal farmers have been concerned about the lack of rain so far this season, which has raised doubts over an improvement after last years poor harvest.
Portugal has not needed to import any French maize, and is unlikely to do so until the summer. This comes as a result of them still having enough reduced-levy maize from Eastern European countries in their port silos.
Spanish wheat prices fell slightly last week as a result of slower EU export pace. Heavy availability in the EU was said to have weighed on prices. Spanish barley has also been plentiful, which has kept its domestic prices trading at depressed levels.
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