Monday, 17 July, 2000
The European new-crop wheat harvest has been seriously affected by the weather, with delays being seen across Northern Europe. Quality concerns remain the market focus at the moment.
European malting barley trade has commenced, but trading is very thin. Concern over the quality of the crop remains, but harvest is set to recommence this week with forecasts of improved weather.
European barley prices received some support last week on Moroccos purchase of 80,000t of barley. Although the tender was for optional-origin barley, it is thought that the EU will be the most likely source.
The French Cereals Authority ONIC has set the French soft-wheat crop for 2000/01 at 36.55 million tonnes, up 2.4% on 1999/00. It also expects protein levels to be higher, but specific weight to fall compared to last year. ONIC raised its 2000/01 forecast of EU soft wheat by 6% to 94.3m tonnes.
German growers are reportedly harvesting crops despite the wet weather to ensure some quality results. Harvest results are variable and the tight supply is stimulating cereal demand.
Spanish grain prices reportedly approached intervention levels, with news of a likely bumper winter crop. The pace of harvest is largely mixed across the country, with overall official forecasts for a crop of 18.5m tonnes compared to 13.3m tonnes last year. Prices nevertheless ended the week higher from a week ago.
Denmark is still hoping to have a good malting barley harvest this season, despite the recent weather problems. Trade is quiet, but the market is watching Western European barley crops very carefully, as a poor crop will benefit Danish exports.
1 = 62.7p at time of writing.
Taken from HGCA weekly MI Bulletin
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