This months linked article's:




The cows go out and butterfats plummet. It's a picture repeated across the country every year. But is it worth doing anything to maintain butterfats, and if so what? David Woodcock, Technical Business Manager with Optivite considers the options...More>>


The whole world is experiencing a new era on how commodities are being evaluated due to their relationship with the energy / fuel market

Thousands of tonnes of Palm Kernal Expeller, Wheatfeed and Oatfeed are currently being burnt in our power stations. While energy costs stay firm and continue to rise, the calorific value of products which can be burnt for their energy puts a higher value base price on these commodities and has increased the prices by £5 - £10 per tonne, this can also have a knock on effect for the replacement material required. This being the case we can expect to see starch based bio-products more expensive than last winter.

Maize Gluten / Maize Distillers

These products are only generally offered in the UK until October 2006. This is due to another GM variety of maize being grown in the US, which does not have the approval of EEC (contains a gene called B10). Any shipment, which entered the EEC market, which was found to have the B10 gene, the cargo would automatically be rejected. No shippers will ship corn bio-products until the EEC will accept B10. Hopefully it will be sorted out.

Wheatfeed pellets

A product, which will remain in tight supply, and this is likely to be reflected in its price due to the above. Oct to April £82 - £88 per tonne delivered.


There is a large crop of rape seed forecast, but processors of the seed are having to bid up the market to buy seed required for their crush, this is having an impact on the Rapemeal prices, expect a price range for the winter of £84 - £100 per tonne delivered.

Soya Meal

The US is in the middle of planting a large crop (record average) and it is being sown into a good moist seedbed. Everything for the crop is ideal no bad news - YET! The only other news that can improve the crop is perfect weather. When you look at what can go wrong; less acres planted, drought, rust, frost etc we think prices are comparatively cheap compared to other products. The only real threat is a pandemic of bird flu. Hipro for the winter £140 - £155 per tonne delivered.

Sugarbeet Pellets

The summer will remain very tight for UK produced product, with expensive imported tonnage available to fill any potential void. For new crop, expect prices to be £3 - £4 above last year, always providing the new crop does not suffer drought damage.


This would appear to be good value. Nov - April at about £82 - £90 compared to Sugarbeet pellets.

Soya Hulls

This is currently being sort after due to the price of Sugarbeet pellets and the non-availability of Citrus pellets, spot available at £92 - £100 per tonne delivered but ASA (After Safe Arrival) July - April at £82 - £90 per tonne delivered.

Palm Kernal Expeller

A good food helpful through its oil content for butterfats, good value at £72 - £80 per tonne delivered July to April. Anyone feeding it to cattle as a straight feed should be made aware that the meal contains particles of shell which are as hard as flint and can get stuck in cattle hooves and cause lameness, particularly if it is a slurry based system.

Wheat - Old Crop

It seems apparent that we are scraping the bottom of the barrel in the western region when trying to locate fresh supplies of wheat. As a result prices have firmed with ex farm levels in excess of £80 not unheard of. A word of warning, this may well not last as merchants are holding stocks which in conjunction with DEFRA / HGCA reporting that potential UK carryover stock could be as much as 2 million tonnes, this would almost certainly cap the market and lead to a slip in value.

Any further price hike would kill off any potential we have of exporting our final surplus that we have.

Wheat - New Crop

Pundits suggest that up to 15% of new crop has already been traded however, it is more likely to be nearer 10%. New crop upside potential remains greater than the downside as forward values still continue to be underpinned by the green fuel influence and lack of keen sellers.

With most of the crops looking pretty good and with a bit of sunshine forecast all looks promising for a big crop. This could well depress prices for a period as buyers would almost certainly react in an attempt to peg back prices.

We think it is fair to say that most mills have forward cover that they are comfortable with but with the avian flu spectre still hanging over us and a largely unsold new crop still to trade it is difficult to convince any buyer to chase the market at this stage.

We think it would be fair to say our overall view would be beamish to bullish on new crop.

NB: There are many variables with feed commodities, such as exchange rate, the weather, supply and demand and changes of legislation, which can all have large effects on the prices. Therefore the above must be seen only as a guide and nothing more.

All prices quoted are based on artic loads (29t) delivered into Cheshire. Smaller loads are obviously available, but will increase the price.


All in all most protein sources look quite attractive (despite the problems with Maize Gluten and Maize Distillers, which will hopefully be resolved).

Energy sources i.e. Wheat, Biscuit Meals, Sugarbeet, have more pressure to increase rather than decrease in value.

Fibre sources again look reasonably attractive.

If you take the three groups named above you have the basis for the manufacture of most compounds and blends. We suggest you consider booking forward your winter requirements NOW - we are happy to quote on a fixed formulation basis for any blend and / or compound and neither will be changed without your prior agreement.

If you wait until Autumn the chances are you will end up paying more!

Ring GP Feeds today!



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