Europe-wide drought piles pressure on feed supplies
Securing sufficient feed ingredients for the Irish livestock sector this winter remains a challenge, importers and millers have warned.
The drought across northern Europe and Russia has cut available feed supplies and increased demand and prices for stocks.
John Bergin of feed importers R&H Halls urged both farmers and compounders to plan what they need now and take the necessary steps to secure supplies.
Strong buying of feed ingredients by merchants in July has left the country well provisioned in the short-term, Mr Bergin said.
However, the continuing drought on the continent has hit the availability of key grains and non-grains ingredients.
Mr Bergin pointed out that disastrous harvests across Scandinavia and Germany means that Denmark, Germany and Sweden, traditionally wheat exporting countries, have become net importers of grain this year.
The loss of these major European exporters has changed the sourcing of key ingredients leading to importers having to source and purchase in markets further afield, with consequent increases in shipping times.
Mr Bergin said a combination of a reduced cereal crop gloablly and increased feed demand across northern Europe has led to significant upward pressure on prices.