Consistency helps win export sales
VARIETAL segregation and consistent quality would also help secure export markets, said Alan Almond, director of British Cereal Exports.
"Ask anywhere in the world what the biggest complaint about UK wheat is and they will say it is inconsistency," he highlighted. No variety and little detail in export contracts has brought inconsistent baking performance. A typical example of a traditional export shipment is shown in the table (right).
But a recent BCE initiative highlighted to Italian millers the opportunity for varietal segregation. Substantial sales followed.
"BCE hosted a visit by Italys biggest baker, Barilla. We visited UK farms, looked at varietal segregation and did our homework on the chopin alveograph test."
Barilla consequently bought 3000t of Riband and Consort from eight known UK farms. They later confirmed it was the best biscuit wheat they had ever bought. "On the back of that a further 200 Italian flour millers have listened, and now have the confidence that if they ask for something specific they will get it," said Dr Almond.
Wheat to Italy: Typical
blended cargo Sept 97
Variety % grains P:L value
Brigadier 38 1.64
Riband 12 0.40
Hereward 12 0.62
Encore 8 0.67
Hunter 8 0.47
Rialto 6 0.92
+Avalon, Mercia etc ideally <0.5