With many good rape crops, should we sell some now, asks Matt Redman

Congratulations and well done to all those involved in the organisation and running of the 2012 NFU conference; I had a fantastic two days and I hope I get the chance to go again next year.


It was great to hear the “next generation” being talked about so often, as they or should I say, “we” are the future of the industry. I also thought it was good that when the “next generation” put forward questions and ideas, the importance of working with those already established in the industry, was nearly always mentioned.

I’m pleased to say I’ve now passed BASIS, but am also thankful we still have an agronomist making the decisions as I’ve still got a lot to learn.

Even more so this year as the wheat isn’t looking its best, with forward, well tillered plants and small plants with no tillers mixed in the same field; judging its potential could be difficult if things don’t change soon. At least the cold weather in February has reduced the disease pressure somewhat, so things aren’t as bad as they could have been.

The oilseed rape is still looking pretty good. It’s not too lush, or too small and, hopefully, the first nitrogen dressing has been perfectly timed (we can dream, right). Even the pigeons have retreated to a small corner, I’m hoping a small white flag will be waving shortly and they’ll disappear off in search of someone else to hassle.

The only problem is that everywhere you look this season there seems to be a good oilseed rape crop. So should we be looking to sell some now before a good harvest, or hang on for higher prices after most crops don’t perform due to another drought? Answers on a postcard please.

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