South: Supply issues

Product supply issues seem to be the main topic of conversation at the moment, which I always find vaguely amusing given the amount of time and effort the manufacturers put into promoting these products.

Not to mention how much time we spend trying to budget and forecast likely requirements. A factory fire in South America or a ship with a puncture in the Baltic seems to throw all kinds of confusion into the silly season.

An interesting outcome of this happening is that sometimes strategies are adopted which otherwise wouldn’t be and quite often they turn out to be better – usually with a different manufacturer’s products. I hope the marketing gurus in the big manufacturing companies are aware of that…

Having said all that, thanks to the supreme effort of the buying group my clients use, we haven’t been too badly affected. Also, on top of that, the crops look fantastic. Huge efforts have been made to fit spraying in around the showers, the fertiliser has all been washed in, and the ever present threat of a septoria explosion for the most part has been contained.

Winter barley is about to be put to bed (hooray!), oilseed rape is coming to the end of flowering, and all the spring crops have been able to grow away healthily. What we need to do now is keep the momentum going for another few weeks and then we might be able to take a breather.

Unlike this time last year when by now things had only just woken up and I was still checking oilseed rape crops in early August to see if they were ready for desiccation.


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