UK Grain now in it’s 7th year, is the post-harvest event for growers
The event provides a strategic opportunity to consider storage handling, drying and marketing needs. It attracts those looking for reinvestment in their fixed grain handling equipment, crop monitoring and offers marketing advice and storage opportunities/solutions.
There is a full technical exhibition from the key players within the business and this is fully supported by a seminar programme, which is free to all visitors. In addition there is a GrainStorm area where visitors can talk one to one on specific issues with industry experts.
Representatives of Bulgarian agricultural organizations and the Ministry of Agriculture discussed the priorities for the next six-year EU programming period, Tuesday. The subsidy distribution by sector should be presented in Brussels by July 31, Bulgarian National Radio informs.
AgGateway's Standardized Precision Ag Data Exchange (SPADE) Project has posted documentation that fills a critical gap in providing data exchange between diverse devices and systems used by farmers for seeding operations. The document is available for industry use and comment. Equipment manufacturers are expected to immediately begin utilizing the AgGateway SPADE data exchange processes to better support growers as they leverage their data to increase production efficiency.
F4F Agriculture, a global business dedicated to the farmer-centric digital supply chain, announces it has signed an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) agreement with SAP (NYSE:SAP) for the deployment of the SAP HANA® platform.
Paris/Reuters — Premiums for higher-quality wheat in France jumped on Monday as heavy weekend rain added to fears that this year’s harvest in the European Union’s top producer and exporter will be spoiled by poor quality.
Farmers in eastern France have reported alarming quality indications for wheat, blamed on repeated rainfall in early July in the run-up to harvesting. After a dry spell last week, storms across France at the weekend brought as much as 50 mm of rain in some areas.
On the French cash market on Monday the spread between animal-feed wheat and milling wheat was at an unusually wide level of around 30 euros a tonne, close to levels seen during the poor quality harvest of 2007, brokers said.
Cash premiums for milling wheat against benchmark Paris wheat futures were between zero and 8 euros a tonne, a rise of up to 4 euros from Friday, brokers said.
“The market is becoming more and more complicated with such a mixed bag of quality,” one French broker said. “It’s a race to find milling wheat between millers and exporters.”
The increasing risk that a large portion of the 2014 crop will be graded as feed wheat was leading to cancellation of contracts and fresh deals being struck to cover quality needs, brokers said.
A swathe of northeast France from the outskirts of Paris to the German border via Burgundy was worst affected, with brokers citing 30 per cent sprouted grain and low Hagberg readings.
German wheat as hedge
Germination can lead to wheat being downgraded to animal-feed quality when it exceeds two per cent of volume, as can low Hagberg falling numbers, another measure of milling quality.
The French wheat harvest was still in its early stages after rain delays, with about a quarter of the crop cut, traders said.
Worries over poor harvest quality led some French buyers to turn to the German market.
“We have seen some French purchase interest in Hamburg today apparently with German wheat being taken as a hedge against quality losses caused by rain in France,” a German trader said.
Problems over crop quality could also lead to renewed debate over delivery of grain traded on the Euronext futures market.
The Senalia export silo at the northern port of Rouen, which was previously the sole delivery point for Euronext wheat, caused controversy two years ago by imposing additional quality requirements after a rain-affected harvest.
Euronext’s November contract will have a second delivery point at Rouen, the Socomac silo, but traders said the fact it does not currently set its own criteria like Senalia could create confusion over the quality of wheat delivered against Euronext futures.
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Turnaround Tuesday on grain markets transformed into Groundhog Day, as early gains evaporated, leaving futures to chalk up a fresh series of contract lows.
Actually, bulls emerged with some honour, as old crop August soybeanfutures felt some further support from 120,000-tonne US sale to China announced on Monday, closing up 0.7% in Chicago at $11.84 a bushel.
In Paris, rapeseed for November bounced 2.0% to E322.25 a tonne, filling in a chart gap left by a tumble in the last session, when French co-operatives were said to be in selling mode.
Ditto, milling wheat for November which gained 1.0% to E178.00 a tonne for November, amid growing concerns over the extent of rain damage to the European Union harvest, including the French crop, the bloc's biggest.
Besides the comments from Europe reported by Agrimoney.com, the EU quality concerns are making waves in the US, with Richard Feltes at Chicago broker RJ O'Brien for instance, reporting that "the wet EU wheat harvest weather could drive more high quality wheat business to the US".
In Kansas state, Darrell Holaday at Country Futures said that "there are some EU weather concerns developing which is putting in some support in for better quality US wheat".
In Minneapolis, Benson Quinn Commodities said: "Wet conditions continue to plague wheat harvest in portions of the EU, which is putting more focus on quality."
Not that this appeared to make much of a difference to investor thinking, as they returned to liquidation mode, encouraged by yet further talk of huge US corn and soybean yields.
"Can the national corn yield be 185 bushels per acre?" Paul Georgy at broker Allendale said, citing a figure well above the record 165.3m bushels per acre that the US Department of Agriculture is factoring in.
The USDA figure is widely seen as an underestimate, with considerable talk of 170 bushels per acre, and even a little above.
Mr Holaday said it was "not very difficult to get to" to a yield estimate of 171.5 bushels per acre, but "is also fair to say that it may be hard to get to a number over 175 bushels per acre".
'Will become much more critical'
Whatever, it wasn't the kind of talk to get buyers excited, and signal a floor to prices, even when some cracks are emerging in ideas of perfect US corn and soybean growing weather.
"If we don't see better rain than is projected in the next five days in the Plains and western Midwest, the rains later next week will become much more critical for the soybean crop," Mr Holaday said.
Mr Feltes said that the weather outlook "leans positive" for prices, in showing a "drier tone to the western US over the next 10 days".
Still, any weather setbacks would occur at a time when the condition of US crops is at historic highs - for corn and soybeans at least, if not forcotton.
Huge soymeal orders
In Chicago, corn for December closed down 1.0% at $3.68 ¼ a bushel, a fresh contract closing low, and boding ill for the kind of scenario of weaker agriculture growth rates which DuPont cautioned of.
The old crop September contract ended down 1.0% at $3.60 ¼ a bushel, a fresh four-year low for a spot contract.
In soybeans, the new crop November lot ended down 1.3% at $10.57 ¾ a bushel, a contract closing low.
This despite the USDA's confirmation of talk of buyers around forsoymeal, with export sales of 225,000 tonnes of the feed ingredient for 2014-15 to "unknown destinations", and a further 180,000 tonnes to Vietnam.
Mr Feltes, said that the orders represented a "clear indication" that importers are locking in US supplies amid "heightened uncertainty over the reliability of the world's largest soy product exporter", Argentina, which has only just settled its latest strike threat in the transport sector.
The strong soymeal orders also tallied with an observation from Oil World that the high protein feed ingredient is, thanks to pricing differences, set to gain in popularity at the expense of grains.
"Given the magnitude of potential supplies and the resulting pressure on prices, world consumption of eight major oil meals is likely to be boosted to a record," Oil World said.
"This will occur again under the lead of soymeal, which is expected to garner market share from other oil meals and also from feed grains if prices are attractive."
Soymeal certainly didn't shirk from its task of trying to improve its competitiveness, falling 1.5% to $346.80 a short ton in Chicago for December delivery, despite the US export orders.
Nor did wheat allow soymeal to gain too much ground, falling 1.0% to $5.24 ½ a bushel itself in Chicago for September delivery.
Sure, the European wheat harvest is proving disappointing on quality, but US wheat still faces the pull of lower prices of fellow grain corn, and some weight from the US harvest too.
Besides, the Wheat Quality Council has begun its US spring wheat tour which will doubtless underline the fine condition of that crop too.
Among soft commodities, forecasts of rain in drought-hit Brazil were blamed for a decline of 2.7% to 168.30 cents a pound in New Yorkarabica coffee futures for September delivery,
Raw sugar for October eased too, ending down 0.7% at 17.16 cents a pound, on profit-taking from the last session, even though, at Commerzbank said, Brazil's rainfall "is expected to disrupt harvesting this week".
But New York cotton for December added 0.3% to 67.91 cents a pound, helped by deterioration in the US crop, and showing signs of stabilisation after its fall to contract lows earlier in the month.
Report: Kansas wheat harvest 95 percent finished KSN-TV The National Agricultural Statistics Service reported Monday that 95 percent of the wheat is now in the bin. Usually by this late in the year, all the wheat has been cut.
San Miguel Pure Foods Company Inc, the food manufacturing arm of San Miguel Corp, said Tuesday it will expand a flour mill in Batangas and build two new factories in preparation for the Asean economic integration in 2015.
This summer, more than 270 arable farmers attended one of eight HGCA Monitor Farm meetings across the country. The opening meetings held in June and July 2014 launched each of the eight new HGCA Monitor Farms, as part of a major initiative, which will eventually see 24 Monitor Farms hosted across England and Wales. The Monitor Farms are a key component of HGCA’s Business Development programme, which will help farmers to understand their cost of production, address key technical challenges and deliver more profitable businesses.
Ermias Kebreab, Ph.D, an expert in ruminant nutrition, and Gerald Shurson, Ph.D, an expert in swine nutrition, was honored at an awards ceremony Monday evening for their professional achievements by the American Feed Industry Association and the American Society of Animal Science.
The poor quality of the French wheat crop is driving "substantial" volumes onto the export market as feed, with results from other European countries exacerbating ideas of strong rivalry in this sector.
"There are definitely some problems with the French wheat crop," traders at a major European commodities house said.
"After news of some lodging and sprouting in the field, we are now seeing substantial tonnages of French feed wheat being offered on the export market," an observation confirmed to Agrimoney.com by an analyst at a leading global broker.
"That is definitely happening. The French are keen to sell," the analysts said, with a sharp decline in Paris futures on Monday attributed in part to "selling by co-operatives", which are a big feature of the French cereals sector.
'Might as well sell the worst stuff'
Indeed, the French feed wheat is being sold at E4 a tonne below that of the neighbouring UK, whose wet climate makes it a more natural supplier of the grain for livestock rations and is, indeed, where feed wheat futures are traded, in London.
France is more typically a provider of soft milling wheat, but harvest time rains, in encouraging sprouting and cutting protein levels, are leaving much fit only for feed.
The enthusiasm of its producers to sell grain for feed supplies is being seen as a symptom of the compromised quality of a European crop which looks like coming in large on quantity, but with a much-reduced proportion fit for milling.
"As harvest moves north through Europe, a picture is developing of good yields but concerns over quality," the European commodities house said.
A UK grain trader told Agrimoney.com: "There looks like being no shortage of feed wheat in Europe, and that is before you get to the corn crop, and to the huge US corn crop on the way as well.
"You have to think you might as well sell the worst stuff now, as it could be a long time before you see any kind of shortage to lift prices again."
Not so bad
In fact, wheat quality in Central Europe appears to be coming in relatively strong, the brokerage analyst said, boding well for hard wheat supplies for which Germany is noted, with some decent results from the Czech Republic, of 15% protein or more.
However, the problems further east, in Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary, have been well documented, by commentators from INTL FCStone to the US Department of Agriculture, prompting talk of a scramble for quality supplies by merchants seeking to fulfil export orders.
Romania earlier this month won two high-profile victories at wheat tenders by Gasc, the grain authority for Egypt, the world's top wheat importer.
Meanwhile, in western Europe, in north east France, the there are reports of 30% germination rates in wheat in a band stretching from Paris to the German border.
Wheat vs corn
"The question now is what all this means for prices," the analyst said, forecasting support for quality premiums from the squeeze on supplies, but for feed wheat too from the extent it has already fallen.
"It is already below production cost," the analyst said.
In fact, corn futures in Europe are performing particularly poorly, not just because of increased competition from feed wheat, but from raised harvest prospects, with the rain undermining wheat quality a boost for autumn-harvested crops, still in their growing period.
Corn futures for November, standing down 0.8% at E158.50 a tonne in Paris on Tuesday, were down 10.1% in the past month, compared with a 6.0% drop to E177.00 a tonne in November milling wheat futures.
That took above 50%, to E18.50 a tonne, the rise in the premium of milling wheat to corn over the period.
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