The feed trade has calmed down once more after last month’s anxieties, but there is still the prospect of another upturn in wheat prices during the coming months.

UK feed wheat fell back to an average of £176 a tonne last week, a fall of £23/t on a month earlier.

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This takes it back almost to where it was in April.

At the same time, soyameal has also given ground, but more cautiously, easing back £10/t on last month. This still leaves it £30/t above the April figure.

Correspondingly, the effect on our Basic Layers’ Ration has been to bring it back down by £23/t after last month’s uptick, although it remains at a higher figure than it was back in February.

Cereal marketing year

June marks the end of the cereal marketing year in the northern hemisphere, which can often be the low point for ration costs.

A month ago, the potential effects of difficult weather on the developing harvest, from western Europe across to Russia, caused a sudden upsurge in prices.

Since then, weather conditions have improved and harvest predictions have stabilised, while the latest forecast for the Russian crop has been raised up a little.

Across the Atlantic the US wheat harvest has been going well.

However, the weather outlook continues to worry traders, and for now, future price movements are considered more likely to be upwards again.

Soya

Soyameal has been on a bit of a rollercoaster during the first half of the year, even though the fundamentals globally have changed very little overall. Hence, the price is now much the same as in March.

At present, world prices are being steered by the current US soyabean crop.

The seemingly inevitable weather concerns are supporting prices; while the satisfactory progress of the crop is limiting any increases.

The general sentiment is that supplies will be more than sufficient going forward, resulting in prices coming under pressure during the second half of the year.