15 January 1999

Spring barley rally

DIFFICULT autumn conditions and a rallying barley market are contributing to soaring demand for spring barley seed, particularly in Scotland.

"The north and Scotland are increasingly under pressure for seed stocks following autumn conditions that have left 50,000 hectares unplanted," says David Neale, Dalgetys national cereal seed product manager. "This is not going into set-aside as many had suggested, but is destined for spring barley. Conditions in the south have not been much better."

To meet demand Dalgety, in co-operation with breeder New Farm Crops, has imported 500t of Optic seed from Europe this week.