Market report: Oilseeds reap the benefit of demand boost

Oilseed rape markets have improved over the Christmas period, driven by firmer crude oil prices following colder weather and strong food demand.

Although little actual trade has taken place in recent days, ex-farm prices have followed French MATIF futures up by £5/t since 21 December, to more than £240/t, close to year-ago levels. American soyabean exports in December were larger than expected, at 1.2m tonnes, and both sun oil and palm oil prices have firmed, helping to support rapeseed markets.

Wheat values have also improved, following rising equity and commodity markets in the USA. British prices have risen by around £3/t since before Christmas, and traders anticipate that increased fund buying will further support values. Spot feed wheat is now worth around £102/t ex-farm, with new crop prices rising to about £110/t for November. Milling wheat premiums have widened slightly, with full specification Group One varieties priced at about £120/t ex-farm for January movement, depending on location.

Feed barley remains the poor relation, fetching about £80/t for spot movement, with new crop prices pegged at around £95/t for November. Pulse prices have improved slightly, with peas and beans now worth about £135/t ex-farm for January.