Fresh lows for wheat price as harvesting resumes in earnest

Wheat prices have hit fresh lows as currency values have strengthened through the week, with the market battling to stay in touch with global values.

The pound rallied on an improved outlook for a Brexit deal after Boris Johnson’s whistle-stop European diplomacy tour ahead of this weekend’s G7 meeting in Biarritz with £1 buying €1.11 for the first time since the end of July.

The UK is set to comfortably exceed domestic crop requirements this year as cutting resumes across the country following a prolonged spell of unsettled weather.

The average ex-farm spot wheat price across the UK was close to £2/t lower today (23 August) at £122/t compared with midweek and £7/t lower than a week ago.

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Prices varied between £125/t in Shropshire and Cheshire and £115/t in Kent and East Sussex.

Despite news that bioethanol plant Ensus had re-commenced buying UK feed wheat for its Teesside plant, prices were £9/t lower on the week in Yorkshire at £124/t.

Feed wheat prices are now £52/t lower than the same week last year and feed barley prices are £54/t lower.

The wheat futures market for Nov-19 has also fallen to a fresh contract low, closing at £135.50/t yesterday (22 August) and trading today as low as £134.50/t.

Grain marketing firm Saxon Agriculture is reporting a number of key wheat-producing countries are continuing to upgrade their crop forecasts, putting further pressure on prices.

German farm association DBV has put the 2019 wheat crop at 23.1m tonnes, up from 22m tonnes previously forecast.

Ag-Canada is now forecasting its crop to be 32.5m tonnes, up from 31.8m tonnes in 2018.