Digital Re-print - July | August 2012  A fresh perspective on UK milling wheat Grain & Feed Milling Technology is publishe...
FEATURE                                            A fresh perspective                                           on UK mil...
FEATURE                                                                     Added to data from              Experience, af...
This digital Re-print is part of the July | August 2012 edition of Grain & Feed Milling Technology magazine. 	 Content fro...
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A fresh perspective on UK milling wheat


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Escalating production costs and risks, uncertain premiums, growing workload pressures and attractive feed prices are all serving to undermine the confidence of even the most historically committed of UK milling wheat growers. To such an extent that a fresh industry-wide approach to quality wheat will be essential if sufficient domestic production is to be maintained.

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A fresh perspective on UK milling wheat

  1. 1. Digital Re-print - July | August 2012 A fresh perspective on UK milling wheat Grain & Feed Milling Technology is published six times a year by Perendale Publishers Ltd of the United Kingdom. All data is published in good faith, based on information received, and while every care is taken to prevent inaccuracies, the publishers accept no liability for any errors or omissions or for the consequences of action taken on the basis of information published. ©Copyright 2010 Perendale Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means without prior permission of the copyright owner. Printed by Perendale Publishers Ltd. ISSN: 1466-3872
  2. 2. FEATURE A fresh perspective on UK milling wheat by David Neale, Business Development Manager, Agrii, United KingdomE scalating production costs and Overall, quality is likely to be far closer At a very modest £155/tonne, for risks, uncertain premiums, growing to the 10-year average than last year. And instance, a 10t/ha 2011/12 Group 4 wheat is workload pressures and attractive it might even be nearer to 2007 and 2008, set to deliver a gross margin of £894/ha. Thisfeed prices are all serving to undermine when just 11 percent and six percent respec- compares with £723/ha for a 9t/ha Groupthe confidence of even the most histori- tively of Group 1 wheat samples made the 1 at the same price. Assuming it is paid oncally committed of UK milling wheat full specification (Figure 2). So domestic sup- the entire tonnage, this means a premium ofgrowers. To such an extent that a fresh plies are set to be tight. £20/t is required for margin parity.industry-wide approach to quality wheat The current season’s difficulties and con- However, if only 30 percent of sampleswill be essential if sufficient domestic cerns are also making farmers less inclined to make the full specification – in line with theproduction is to be maintained. grow milling wheat; especially so in the face 10-year average – our calculations suggest of increasingly attractive world feed wheat this premium will compensate for less than Annual HGCA surveying shows a reduc- prices and expanding domestic feed grain half the feed wheat yield difference at thetion of just under 20 percent in the area of markets for bioethanol. base price of £155/tonne, making millingGroup 1 & 2 wheats grown in the UK over The indicative margins our farm manage- wheat a seriously unattractive proposition.the past four years – from 650,000 ha in ment specialists calculate on a regular basis Under these circumstances and with such2009/10 to less than 530, 000 ha in the most for our agronomists to work with their grow- pressures on margins and workloads, it isrecent season (Figure 1). ers, indeed, show milling wheat stacking-up hardly surprising so many growers are losing HGCA quality records further show 2011 relatively poorly against feed wheat produc- confidence in milling wheat. All the morewas the best year for wheat quality since tion – even before the latest steep rises in so with the premium variations and intake2006 with 40 percent of Group 1 samples world markets. deductions they encounter, not to mentionmaking the full 13 percent pro- increasing economic and environ-tein, 250 Hagberg, 76 kg/hl spe- mental pressures on nitrogen andcific weight milling specification. other essential input use.This meant quality wheats werein reasonable supply despite the Meeting millingsubstantial shift away from milling specificationswheat growing. In addition, of course, there is an urgent need to respond to2012 outlook the serious black-grass challenge This year, however, things look facing up to 20 percent of theset to be very different. Protein lev- present wheat area and the legacyels and specific weights, in particular, of the most substantial take-allare widely expected to be disap- and foliar disease season in recentpointing. Fusarium infections have memory; challenges which mayheightened mycotoxin concerns. Figure 1: Group 1 & 2 Wheat Area well necessitate alternative crop-And the atrociously wet summer Source: AHDB HGCA Variety Survey Results ping strategies in some cases, withmeant a challenging, delayed harvest. particular consequences for the24 | July - august 2012 Grain &feed millinG technoloGy
  3. 3. FEATURE Added to data from Experience, after all, teaches growers breeders and official that however attractive premiums may testing, this allows us appear for the immediate season, they to pick varieties that cannot be relied upon for the period will best meet our over which they are having to budget customers’ require- (2013/14 sales for crops planted this ments and provide the autumn). best possible advice In recent years we have been involved in on their suitability for the development of a number of dynamic different rotational market-led examples for encouraging suf- slots and conditions. ficient supplies of crops for value-added It also means we can markets that could provide a model for the offer the most timely new, more productive industry relationship agronomic support to we believe is vital for the health of UK milling Figure 2: Proportion of Group 1 Wheat Samples help improve produc- wheat production. Achieving Full Milling Specification Source: AHDB HGCA Quality Survey Results tion efficiency and reli- Particularly attractive in this context are ability in the face of the arrangements that have been developed the increasing seasonal to encourage the reliable supply of specialistsecond wheat slot in which so many milling variability associated with climate change. rapeseed and oats.wheats are currently grown. This detailed variety understanding fur- Closed-loop contracts have been devel- Our industry-leading Co-ordinated ther means we can plan seed production, oped between growers and OSR crushersGrowing Systems (COGS) research into and work with buyers through our partners, for High Oleic, Low Linolenic (HOLL) rapevarietal capabilities and agronomy across Glencore and Scotgrain to secure ready to serve the healthy cooking oil market,different soil types is enabling us to develop markets ahead of a variety’s commercial and between growers and millers forvery much more reliable recipes for milling availability. That way we’re able to ensure naked oats for human food and high valuewheat production for growers across the both sufficient seed supply and sufficient animal; particularly so as far as meeting the end-market demand. These offer fixed premia over standardprotein specification – by far the most com- In parallel, close working with wheat rapeseed and feed wheat respectively formon reason for Group 1 sample failures – is breeders through leading UK authority, Bill supplies meeting agreed specifications grownconcerned. Angus is giving us a valuable edge in making on specific contract; arrangements which We have, for instance, established indi- the most of the much more rapid vari- provide growers with the assurance they willvidual response curves for grain protein ety progress possible through exciting new receive a set premium for a specific crop if itaccumulation from applied nitrogen for key genetic technologies like genome mapping, makes the required specification before theyvarieties on heavy and light soils over a marker-assisted selection, double haploidy commit to growing it. And equally, from thenumber of seasons as the basis for far more and single seed descent. processors’ stand-point that they can secureprecise agronomy. the supplies they need to serve their custom- Equally, extensive long-term black-grass Encouraging sustainable crop ers at a fixed premium over the commodityand second wheat management studies are valuation market.allowing us to support producers with the Even so, all this work alone won’t be suf- In the face of the serious production,best possible guidance on maintaining winter ficient to prevent the decline in milling wheat market and environmental pressures fac-wheat viability in face of the most important growing reaching a level at which it causes ing milling wheat producers, we no doubtagronomic challenges. serious future supply shortages. It needs that such a thoroughly joined-up industry Through our work we’re able to estab- to be accompanied by an altogether more approach to marketing as well agronomy willlish early in an emerging variety’s life how sustainable and predictable approach to crop be essential to the very future of UK millinggood it really is and where it best fits. valuation and premium-setting. wheat production.Grain &feed millinG technoloGy July - august 2012 | 25
  4. 4. This digital Re-print is part of the July | August 2012 edition of Grain & Feed Milling Technology magazine. Content from the magazine is available to view free-of-charge, both as a full LINKS online magazine on our website, and as an archive of individual features on the docstoc website. Please click here to view our other publications on July - August 2012 • See the full issue • Nutritional impact of pellet binders • Visit the GFMT website • Contact the GFMT Team • A fresh perspective on UK milling wheat In this issue: • Generating added value by extrusion • Health • Technological & safety in • Subscribe to GFMT expertise the working Understand enzyme recovery environment in pelleted feed • Powder Containment A subscription magazine for the global flour & feed milling industries - first published in 1891 To purchase a paper copy of the magazine, or to subscribe to the paper edi- tion please contact our Circulation and Subscriptions Manager on the link adove. INFORMATION FOR ADVERTISERS - CLICK HERE Article reprints All Grain & Feed Milling Tecchnology feature articles can be re-printed as a 4 or 8 page booklets (these have been used as point of sale materials, promotional materials for shows and exhibitions etc). If you are interested in getting this article re-printed please contact the GFMT team for more informa- tion on - Tel: +44 1242 267707 - Email: or visit