THE AHDB has said that demand for broiler feed dropped in July, a trend driven by lower broiler chick placings.

It was the only animal feed sector to decline on the year in July, according to AHDB analyst Thomma Shepherd.

See also: Imports keep feed wheat price rises in check

“Poultry makes up the largest share of animal feed demand within the UK, and roughly 60% of the ration is made up of cereals,” she said.

“With this in mind, the decline in poultry feed production is likely a contributing factor to the fall in wheat demand in July (down 3.3% year on year).”

The fall is thought to be because of a cut back in broiler chick placings, added Ms Shepherd, driven by the closure of the foodservice sector.

But that lower demand was somewhat offset by higher in-home purchases.

Biggest risk

The forced closure of processing plants could also have an impact on the sector’s confidence.

Broiler eggs set in July were 3.3% down, according to the latest Defra data, suggesting that feed demand may be lower for at least the next few months.

“How long this will continue will largely depend on coronavirus, but it is thought that the biggest risk to the poultry sector would be a second wave leading to another lockdown and reinstated closure of the foodservice [sector].”