AHDB daily market commentary

Tuesday, 2 November 2021
  • May-22 UK feed wheat futures continued to climb yesterday (+£2.50/t) to close at £226.50/t. This follows the wider global grains picture.
  • US maize and soyabean harvests were slowed by rain last week. The maize crop was 74% harvested and the soyabean 79% on Sunday. Both came in below analyst expectations.
  • Stratégie Grains increased its 2021/22 EU sunseed production forecast by over 200Kt to 10.16Mt. They also revised the EU rapeseed estimate down to 16.97Mt, whilst reducing imports of the crop too. Lowered imports are said to be down to the availability of rapeseed.
The Australian effect: Grain market daily

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Wednesday, 3 November 2021
  • UK wheat futures (May-22) closed yesterday at £227.10/t, gaining £0.60/t on Monday’s close. The Nov-21 contract also gained (£1.90/t) over the same period, to close at £218.35/t. Although the number of open contracts is dwindling as Nov-21 nears the end of trade.
  • However, new crop UK wheat futures (Nov-22) closed at £197.50/t, down £0.50/t from Monday’s close which was a contract high.
  • Old crop Paris wheat futures (Dec-21) closed yesterday at a contract high of €292.75/t.
  • Short-term support comes from slightly declining conditions of US winter crops (below expectation) at a time of short supply, combined with strong international demand for grains.

New crop wheat prices could pose an opportunity for domestic growers: Grain market daily


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Thursday 4 November 2021
  • After rising every day since 21 October, May-21 UK feed wheat futures fell £2.10/t yesterday to £225.00/t. Nov-22 futures declined £1.50/t to £196.00/t.
  • Wheat prices fell due to profit-taking in global markets, plus a fall in crude oil prices. Nearby Brent crude oil prices fell to $81.99/barrel yesterday, the lowest level since 7 October ahead of an OPEC+ meeting this afternoon. If sustained, lower crude oil prices could reduce global demand for ethanol and biodiesel and so the grains and vegetable oils used to make them.
  • May-22 Paris rapeseed futures fell €4.75/t to €674.00/t yesterday, or approx. £572/t. The Nov-22 price fell €2.25/t to €580.50/t, or approx. £493/t. (Refintiv).
  • UK cereal usage statistics for September 2021 are now available. Click here for animal feed and here for human and industrial.

New crop price support from US maize area risk: Analyst's Insight


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Friday 5 November 2021
  • UK feed wheat futures (May-22) gained £0.35/t yesterday, to close at £225.35/t. Whereas, the Nov-22 contract climbed £2.80/t yesterday, to close at £198.80/t.
  • Global wheat contracts are on path for another weekly gain on tight supply and demand. Stronger-than-expected demand has supported gains this week, including tenders from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Japan, Jordan, and Pakistan. This is met by increasing supply concerns from dry planting conditions in the US and Black Sea regions.
  • Argentinian rains over the week have boosted wheat development and maize sowings, according to the Buenos Aires Grains Exchange. The wheat harvest is forecast at 19.8Mt and harvest is expected to start in December.
  • French maize harvest was 73% complete to 1 November, up 19pp from a week earlier. Though, the harvest still lags the previous 5-year average by 11 days.
Final survey results show milling wheat quality challenges continue: Grain market daily

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Tuesday 9 November 2021

  • UK feed wheat futures (May-22) slipped back a further £2.85/t yesterday to close at £219.15/t, potentially with traders cashing in on recent price highs.
  • The market is currently awaiting the USDA world agriculture supply and demand estimates, due out tonight (17:00 GMT).
  • Paris rapeseed futures (May-22) closed last night at €655.50/t, down €8.50/t from Fridays close, pressured by the wider oilseed and oil market.
  • Malaysian palm oil slipped a further 3.16% from Friday to Monday, to the lowest price since 4 October 2021.
Bread wheat winning in 2021/22: Grain market daily

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Thursday, 11 November 2021
  • UK feed wheat futures (May-22) continued to rise yesterday, gaining £4.50/t, to close at £225.00/t.
  • This follows global contracts, Chicago and Paris (May-22) which gained $8.63/t and €8.25/t respectively.
  • French maize harvest is set to be a big one. French grower group AGPM suggest record average yields could be achieved this time. They also predict 85-100Kha could shift from fodder maize to grain maize as farmers want to take advantage of current high prices. They predict the crop could reach 16.5Mt, 2Mt higher than the current France farm ministry estimate.
Analyst Insight: bioethanol demand adding fuel to feed grain prices?

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Friday 12 November 2021
  • UK wheat futures (May-22) closed yesterday at £228.90/t, gaining £3.90/t on Wednesday’s close. New crop futures (Nov-22) closed yesterday at £200.50/t, gaining £2.50/t on the day before. This set a contract high and broke £200.00/t for the first time.
  • Domestic prices are following the global market trend. Paris wheat futures (May-22) gained 0.88% yesterday, to close at a contract high of €287.75/t.
  • Adding support at the moment, is Russia’s plan to impose more export restrictions. This includes increasing their export taxes if international prices continue to rise, and talks of an export quota for the first half of 2022.

UK trade data; wheat import reduction likely to continue: Grain market daily

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Tuesday 16 November 2021
  • UK feed wheat futures (May-22) closed yesterday at £228.15/t, down £1.25/t from Friday.
  • UK feed wheat followed a dip in Paris milling wheat futures, after Algeria launched a milling wheat tender for a nominal 50Kt over the weekend. This tender detailed relaxed insect damage standards, opening up Black Sea options, especially Russian wheat. This could mean increased competition for the EU in the short term from Russia before potential export quotas are introduced.
  • Chicago soyabean futures (May-22) gained $4.41/t yesterday from Friday, to close at $469.35/t. Gains were made on expectations for higher Chinese demand for US supplies with talks between leaders taking place.
  • The latest US crop progress report released last night reflected harvest progress with recent dry weather. Maize harvest was 91% complete and soyabean harvest 92% complete as at 14 November (USDA). This is up 7 percentage points (pp) and 5pp respectively, from the previous week. More from this report is explained below.

US weather watching continues: Grain market daily

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Wednesday 17 November 2021

  • UK wheat futures (May-22) closed yesterday at £226.25/t, down £1.90/t on Monday’s close. The Nov-22 contract closed yesterday at £199.25/t, down £1.50/t on Monday’s close.
  • After 6 successive sessions of gains, Chicago wheat (May-22) closed yesterday, down 1.90% on Monday’s close at $303.14/t.
  • Pressure came from a strengthening dollar, against the Euro and Yen, combined with profit taking.
  • According to the German oilseed industry association UFOP, the countries winter rapeseed area for 2022 harvest is likely to rise to 1.03 – 1.08Mha.
  • The UK’s planted area intentions will be published this Friday, in our Early Bird Planting Survey.

Is palm oil the base of supported vegetable oils? Grain market daily


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Thursday 18 November 2021
  • May-22 UK feed wheat futures rose £2.00/t yesterday to £228.25/t. The Nov-22 contract also gained £2.50/t to £201.75/t, its highest price yet.
  • This followed a rise in global markets due to continued international import demand for wheat, and concerns about political tensions between Ukraine and Russia.
  • May-22 Paris rapeseed futures lost €9.25/t yesterday to €664.50/t, roughly £559/t. The Nov-22 contract fell €3.50/t yesterday to €573.00/t or approximately £482/t.
  • The pull back in rapeseed prices followed falls in soy oil and Canadian canola prices. Crude oil prices have also been softer over the past couple of days due to worries about demand from COVID 19 case numbers.
Northern and Scottish ex-farm feed wheat basis rising

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Tuesday 23 November 2021
  • UK wheat futures (May-21) closed yesterday at £239.80/t, gaining £6.30/t on Friday’s close and setting yet another contract high.
  • The November-22 closed yesterday at £210.00/t, gaining £5.00/t on Friday’s close. Meanwhile, the November-23 contract closed down £0.50/t yesterday, at £188.50/t.
  • Nearby Chicago wheat futures climbed to a 9-year-high yesterday. Rising Russian prices with the floating tax are keeping the market bullish.
  • This is also combined with rains in Australia, which are slowing harvest and compromising quality. Together, these factors have provided the fresh news for this market to keep climbing.

Early Bird Survey, data we can trust

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Thursday 25 November 2021
  • UK feed wheat (May-22) contract closed down £1.00/t yesterday, to £240.00/t. Nov-22 also lost a little ground yesterday, down £1.50/t to £210.00/t.
  • US wheat, maize and soyabean futures lost some ground yesterday on profit taking ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday today. Though remain at multi-year highs.
  • US soyabean exports have been revised back slightly in the latest USDA Agricultural Trade report, to 55.8Mt. There has been talk that China have been opting for Brazilian soyabeans.
  • The latest US ethanol production figures remain strong at 1,079K barrels per day to week ending 19 November. Ethanol margins remain reportedly good but there are some concerns around logistics.

Supply and demand estimates show wheat picture tightening

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Friday 26 November 2021
  • UK feed wheat futures (May-22) closed at £239.50/t yesterday, down £0.50/t. The Nov-22 contract was unchanged at £210.00/t.
  • There was reduced trade in European markets yesterday. The US markets closed for the Thanksgiving holiday yesterday, limiting market direction. Many in the US take a long weekend, so volumes are likely to be limited again today.
  • Paris rapeseed futures (May-22) fell €3.50/t to €663.25/t yesterday, approx. £559/t. The Nov-22 contract fell €0.50/t to €574.00/t, approx. £484/t.
  • Sterling fell to its lowest level against the US dollar yesterday since December 2020, with £1 = $1.3320 (Refintiv). This follows worries about the new COVID-19 variant of concern and a potential tightening of US monetary policy. The pound also retreated against the euro (£1=€1.1884), but remains relatively strong against that currency so far.

Argentine wheat improving as harvest advances

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Tuesday 30 November 2021
  • UK feed wheat futures (May-22) fell £3.20/t yesterday, to close at £233.40/t.
  • Global supply concerns eased slightly yesterday. The Australian 2021 wheat harvest has been raised to a record 34.4Mt by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES). This is down to higher yields, and boosts production to 3% higher than last season. Yet concerns remain about quality, given recent wet weather.
  • US winter wheat conditions were better-than-expected in the last USDA crop progress report of 2021. Last night’s report rated 44% of winter wheat as good to excellent, unchanged from last week. Trade expected a slight decline in ratings.
  • India’s rapeseed and mustard production is currently forecast to rise 16% year-on-year for 2021/22. This is down to expected area expansion on high prices and good weather (area is currently up 17% to 7.18Mha).
EU exports strong as Russian prices rise

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Wednesday 1 December 2021

  • UK feed wheat futures (May-22) dropped a further £4.90/t yesterday to close at £228.50/t. The contract has lost ground on five consecutive sessions.
  • UK feed wheat followed other key grains contracts down including US maize, US wheat and French wheat on the back of the new covid-19 variant (Omicron) concerns.
  • Despite Australian wheat production anticipated at record highs, premium wheat is hard to come by. Australian premium wheat (FOB, Western Australia) is now priced US$47/t over Australian standard wheat (Refinitiv), compared to US$8-US$10 a few months ago.
Oil drags domestic rapeseed down: Grain market daily

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Thursday 2 December 2021
  • Global grain and oilseed prices stabilised or picked up to varying degrees yesterday. Prices fell at the end of last week and start of this week due to fears about the impact of the new COVID-19 variant on the global economy. These fears reportedly eased slightly yesterday, and the US announced new export sales of maize and soyabeans.
  • May-22 UK feed wheat futures lost another £0.25/t to £228.25/t, but the Nov-22 contract gained £0.50/t to £200.00/t.
  • Paris rapeseed prices picked up more. The May-22 contract gained €15.50/t to €634.25/t, while the Nov-22 contract gained €7.00/t to €537.00/t.
  • The latest AHDB fertiliser prices survey confirmed further sharp rises in October, especially for Ammonium Nitrate. You can find the latest guidance on nitrogen applications, including a handy calculator, here.
High prices starting to bite into feed demand? Grain market daily

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Friday 3 December 2021

  • Global grains rebounded yesterday as UK wheat futures (May-22) gained £6.95/t across the day to close at £235.20/t. In addition, both the Nov 22 & 23 contract gained £4.80/t, to close at £204.80/t and £186.10/t respectively.
  • Global grain markets have been tailing off over the last week or so due to concerns over the new Covid-19 variant. However, this fall has been reversed by a series of import tenders (Egypt, Tunisia & Jordan) that have come around due to the price drop, and fears over what the rain has done to the Australian wheat crop.
  • The latest FAO cereal price index rose was estimated to rise by 3.1% in November on October. This is 23.2% higher than the same time a year ago, with global grain prices hitting the highest level since 2011.

Crop conditions improve compared to last year: Grain market daily

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CHAP Webinar - Innovative tools to overcome the challenges of Regen Ag

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