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Rain hinders harvesting but ¤155/t being offered

Several days of rain have pushed the harvest back a bit but the mild weather should help to boost yields by adding to the grain fill.

It is understood that prices of €155/t for green wheat and €153/t for green barley were on offer to Irish farmers in the past week.

Prices on international markets and on the futures markets continued to yo-yo throughout the week but finished on an upward trend.

November wheat price finished last week at €185/t (£164.75/t), up €3.48 (£3.10) earlier on the same day.

On the Paris MATIF, wheat finished last week on €195.25/t for harvest, after rising by €4.25 during the day. November wheat finished at €194.75/t, also an increase of €4.25.

Part of the rising trend was due to the first official crop estimates from France's ministry of agriculture, which showed that the drought conditions there have taken their toll on all crops.

The French wheat crop is estimated to be down 10pc from last year to 32m tonnes. Despite a 2pc increase in planted area to 5.03m hectares, average yields are estimated to be 6.35t/ha, down from 7.24t/ha last year.

The dry spring also significantly affected barley output, with the total French barley harvest estimated to be down 17pc on last year, to 8.41m tonnes. The oat crop has been slashed by 16pc compared with last year, due to fewer acres planted and lower yields.

Meanwhile, traders are watching the United States' every move on ethanol after it emerged that senators there are considering withdrawing the controversial ethanol blenders 45c/ga tax break and removing a 54c duty on imported ethanol.

Such a move could open up the US market to sugarcane ethanol imports from Brazil and could have a devastating impact on the US corn market, since 40pc of all US corn goes to ethanol production.

Indo Farming