FG BUY&SELL        FARMERS WEATHER       ARABLE FARMING        DAIRY FARMER      FARMERS GUARDIAN        AGRIMONEY        OUR EVENTS        MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS        BLOGS        MORE FROM US

You are viewing 1 of your 2 free articles

You’ll need to join us by becoming a member to gain more access.
Already a Member?

Login Join us now

Steve Heard: With drilling trials over, it is a time to reflect on prices – preferably with a pint

Insights

With a newfound strong resolve, I waited to complete our final wheat drilling trials, which had been delayed until October 31. Some valuable lessons have already been learned.

Twitter Facebook

Firstly, I learned not to conduct end of season experiments in a roadside field adjacent to my own farm buildings and, secondly, not to trim the hedge.

 

Next year I shall plan to be finished at least three weeks earlier, having sown into drier soils. We must, of course, wait patiently until harvest but I would already bet yields have been compromised more by a different establishment than they would have been by any amount black-grass competition.

 

Crops drilled at a more conventional timing already look very well and weed control is above and beyond expectation.

 

My limited observations so far suggest suitable soil conditions for pre- and post-emergence residual chemicals might be far more important than drilling date. Perhaps the later plantings have succeeded by default, as the favourable damp soils provide enhanced chemical activity.

 

The frustrating truth is, however hard we work in the fields and regardless of the attention to detail spent growing and harvesting bumper crops, the final farm profit is dependant so much on the skill or inevitable luck of marketing a commodity at the best possible price. With nobody but myself to blame for these decisions, they become more and more difficult. I could, of course, place a much bigger proportion into a merchant’s crop pool, let them take responsibility and be happy with an average price, but what would be the fun in that?

 

My mood, however, was not improved the other afternoon when I mistakenly clicked open the wrong crop sales folder and found myself staring at our 2012 records. It did not make enjoyable reading.

 

November entries showed milling wheat sales at £242 per tonne and OSR at £380/t plus bonuses.

 

Having contemplated what prices we might have been bid back then for this year’s harvest, I headed for the pub.

Twitter Facebook
Rating (0 vote/s)
Post a Comment
To see comments and join in the conversation please log in.

More Insights

Technology saving calves in Mid Wales

Cameras and co-operation are helping to improve suckler cow performance on a Welsh livestock holding. Barry Alston reports.

Somerset farmer predicts change in livestock feeding

Keith Barrow, Somerset, has changed the way he feeds his cattle and has reduced costs, improved nutrition and opened opportunities elsewhere on-farm. Ann Hardy reports.

Welsh farmers bring hills to life with hydroelectricity

Wales has two things in abundance – hills and rain. Barry Alston meets up with a beef and sheep farming couple making use of both to generate additional income.

Organic dairy farmer taking lessons from his travels

Thomas Edwards was offered the opportunity to meet international young farmers and share ideas for best organic practice. Beth Dixon finds out more.

Gallery: A vivid history of rural life in The Lakes

Travelling up to 200 miles a week by taxi to different parts of the Lake District, Joseph Hardman captured the farming calendar in more than 50,000 photographs. Farmer’s daughter Anne Bonney has rectified his legacy and here shares some of her favourite images.
FG Insight and FGInsight.com are trademarks of Briefing Media Ltd.
Farmers Guardian and FarmersGuardian.com are trademarks of Farmers Guardian Ltd, a subsidiary of Briefing Media Ltd.
All material published on FGInsight.com and FarmersGuardian.com is copyrighted © 2016 by Briefing Media Limited. All rights reserved.
RSS news feeds