By FWi staff

AS the wheat harvest draws to a close, indications are that quality is holding well.

Premiums are up to 16-18/t over feed and, despite reports that the French crop is better than first thought, the UK crop remains superior.

The French crop is now achieving higher proteins, but this is the least important quality as it is easily replaced by gluten, claims Banks Agriculture in its weekly report.

French wheat so far has averaged 74.6kg/Hl and less than 200 hagberg. The UK crop, however, is averaging 78kg/Hl and 311 hagberg, and hence should still provide plenty of export opportunities.

The feed barley market is very quiet with few buying opportunities. The market is awaiting Saudi Arabia to re-enter the market place.

The recent blockading of fuel deliveries last week has effected both farmers and merchants, with collections and deliveries being disrupted.

In many cases long haul collections of milling wheat, malting barley and oats have been suspended, and some vessels in ports remain only partially loaded.

“If the protesting had gone on much longer there would certainly have been long term effects, but things should be back to normal by the end of the week,” says Robert Kerr of Glencore Grain.

“We have missed thousands of tonnes of collection from farms and we have lost money which we wont get back. Its just a case of having to take it on the chin and carrying on.”

Milling wheat is currently trading at 74-76/t ex-farm with a January forward price of 80/t. Feed barley is trading at 58-60/t.