Poll: Are you increasing your spring cropping area in 2016?

Early estimates are pointing to a big rise in the area down for spring barley and pulses this year and we want to know if you’re part of this upward trend.

Oilseed rape drilling fell by 14% last autumn, with unplanted land likely to be taken up by spring crops such as barley, peas and beans.

Tell us about your spring cropping plans this year

Following a bumper harvest last summer, it’s little surprise that the spring barley area is set to swell by 10% to 727,000ha, according to The Andersons Early Bird Survey for 2016.

See also: Which spring crops will give the highest return in 2016?

Spring cropping has the potential to deliver up to 88% control of blackgrass, according to research and spring barley is often the first choice for growers, with yield potential growing as new varieties land on the AHDB Recommended List.

Estimated crop areas for harvest 2016

  • Winter wheat – similar to last season at 1.8m hectares
  • Winter barley – down 4% to 424,000ha
  • Spring barley – up 10% to 727,000ha
  • Oats – up 13% at 148,000ha
  • Oilseed rape – down 14% to 565,000ha
  • Pulses – up 15% to 242,000ha

The spring barley list has had a makeover for 2016/17, with 11 varieties being removed and five new comers.

Limagrain’s technical manager Ron Grainger tells Farmers Weekly that growers on all land types are realising the benefits that spring barley can bring to the farm, as it complies with the three crop rule and gives the potential for a £20/t malting premium over feed prices.

Use our interactive map to view the top 5 yielding spring barley varieties in your area.

Essex grower Tim Smith says he dropped oilseed rape from the rotation completely this year and is growing 42ha of the spring milling wheat variety Mulika. 

He says the spring crop offers drilling date flexibility and a handsome price premium.

Meanwhile, Frontier pulse trader Andrew Bury says he expects the bean harvest could be as high as 600,000t in 2016 after 560,000t last year.

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