Bumper crop drives yields over 5t/acre
Hardening of international grain prices adds to optimistic outlook
Exceptional yields and hardening prices in the international grain market look set to make this year's harvest a bumper one.
Harvest intakes have increased by as much as 33pc in some areas, driven by outstanding yields in crops of both wheat and barley.
Individual wheat yields of 5-5.5t/ac have been recorded, while some fields of barley have reached 4.5t/ac.
The extraordinary yields have resulted in this year being compared with 1984, when wheat yields topped 4t/ac for the first time.
Co Louth merchant Billy O'Dea, from Deeside Agri, said there had been a phenomenal increase in yield.
"To the point where 5t/ac has nearly become the new 4t/ac. Some divisions of land are even recording 6t/ac," Mr O'Dea said.
However, Agricultural Consultants Association (ACA) president Pat Minnock warned that individual crops varied hugely in yield, with some poor yields recorded beside bumper ones.
"Compaction, establishment, weather and rotation all play a role in crop yield," he said.