Know How / Market opportunities

In a competitive market for arable crops, keep on top of where the market opportunities lie. Find out which grain and oilseed rape contracts offer a premium, how future changes to subsidies may affect grain markets and how other farmers have switched varieties to find new markets.

Advice and tips


Why prospects are looking up for peas and beans in 2019

Pulse growers are set to benefit from four useful additions to the Recommended List – two of which are spring beans that increase the performance of pigs and poultry when…


Focus on crop value rather than yield – Hodmedod’s founder

Last summer, a group of farmers harvested their second crop of lentils – a crop that has never been widely cultivated in the UK because it is notoriously difficult to…


What the 2018 winter wheat varieties offer growers

Most of the newly recommended winter wheat varieties for this coming autumn have more yield to offer, but that’s considered unlikely to be enough to tempt growers to make sweeping…


Oat market offers opportunity for farms in the right areas

Oats are the UK’s third largest home-grown cereal crop, behind wheat and barley, and they can be a profitable addition to arable rotations. They are a useful low-input cereal break…

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Case studies


How an Essex farmer grew a crop of mammoth millet

Millet has proved to be a profitable and low-risk addition to Essex grower Christy Willett’s rotation, being easy to grow while also commanding a good price. After making the decision…


Barley growers find secure market with grain for distilling

An expanding band of barley growers in southern England is producing low-nitrogen grain destined for the spirits market and earning themselves a useful price premium. Having a secure domestic market…


Warburtons wheat helps grower cope with Brexit uncertainty

A group of British farmers is growing milling wheat for the domestic bread maker Warburtons, earning a decent price premium and helping to insulate themselves from the worries surrounding Brexit.…


Added-value crops help manage risk on variable soils

Growing crops for added value premiums allows Northampton farmer Rick Davies to offset the extra income against the effects of cropping highly variable soils. With 404ha of combinable crops being…

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Top quality wheats may cut imports and reduce Brexit risks

Britain’s biggest flour miller, Whitworths, is urging wheat growers to produce very high quality grain which could replace imports and help shield them from the uncertainties of Brexit. The privately-owned…


Distorted milling wheat market puts agronomics in spotlight

Wheat growers now have a head-spinning 41 varieties to choose between when they study the AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds’ mammoth Recommended List, meaning it’s trickier than ever before to make…


Why biscuit wheats could trump milling varieties this autumn

In stark contrast to the Group 1 sector, there aren’t enough Group 3 wheats being grown in the UK to meet demand and the millers are keen to secure supplies.…


How winter cropping gross margins stack up for 2017/18

Harvest is underway in some parts of the country, but for most there are still a few weeks to go before the really busy season begins. Now is an opportune time…

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New potato app helps with crop management and yield data

A new potato-specific smartphone app has been developed to help growers improve crop management and marketing decisions right through the supply chain. Developed by Produce Investments group – which includes firms…


How beans can mean a crop with a healthy profit margin

Arable growers are being urged to drill beans this spring as feed compounders are snapping up the crop with some supermarkets demanding more UK-grown protein crops. The bean area is…


Co-op secures bright future for English mustard

An unlikely partnership between a multinational food giant and a small group of growers has secured a brighter future for English mustard – five years after the handful of eastern…

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Video: How to grow a cereal crop for seed

Cereal growers with clean weed-free ground could earn themselves a significant premium over the price of feed wheat and barley by growing crops for seed production. Prices of 10-12% over…

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