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  • Written by: Farmers Guide
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PGRO & BEPA pulse market update – 1 August 2014

Market Commentary
In the UK, EU CAP reform announcements have continued to furtherstimulate already strong interest in the 2015 crop. This political announcementis on top of the well-rehearsed agronomic benefits,issues associated with short rotation cereals/oilseed rapeand falling commodity values. Pea contracts are generally fulluntil after harvest. Certified seed availability may limit the rate ofexpansion for at least a couple of seasons and help minimisespikes in the market. Bean contracts are also selling well andsome forecast winter beans to come back to a level of circa 65,000hain 2015.

French beans

French beans look like beingof better quality this year and will again compete in the exportmarket. Eastern regions suffered lower yield in dry conditions, butwith their earlier availability than UK produce, it will remain to beseen whether the markets prefer the UK quality.

French pea production is mainly yellowpeas and therefore competes less with UK marrowfat and bluepea production but nonetheless puts a base price in the marketfor pea products. Early pea harvests were good but some heavy rainscaused losses.

Canadian pea exportsare set to rise with increased demand from China and the USA. However,high stocks are anticipated and will push pea prices downwards.Green peas are anticipated to retain their premium overyellows. Increased demand is expected from India during the next12 months. Crop 2015 is expected to increase significantly – possibly upto 21% (1.6 million ha) due to the recognition of thebenefits of peas in the rotation and their relative valueto other commodity crops. Despite this, yields are forecast toreturn to a lower level.

USA forecast for2014-15 that dry peas will rise 8% above the current harvest highto 0.78 million tonnes.

Markets are expanding andnew markets are developing for UK produced peas and beans.Good quality is needed to both secure and cement the UKsreputation for quality at home and abroad. Poor quality produce willstruggle to find a home and will in all probability suffer asignificant price penalty.

A significant increase in crop area will inevitably result in adownward pressure on price, however, it is important to stress thatthis is relative to other commodity grains and in this respectpulses have held up remarkably well, continuing to hold asignificant premium forwards. A lower market value also represents anopportunity, as with lower prices demand will also increase.

Local buyers are set to return more robustly in animal feedaquaculture also, brand new markets are opening in snack foods andalternative uses for pulse flour and protein are applied.

Feed beans
Crops continue to grow in the warm moist conditions and some earlysown winter beans have brackled in the recent strong winds, whichmay cause a problem with quality and yield if the plants sufferdrought stress before the seeds are mature.

It is a static market with buyers reluctant to commit ahead of thecrop and with uncertainty in the supply chain. As a result of thegrain and oil seed rape markets falling dramatically, feed beanshave followed accordingly affecting the spring bean valuerespectively. Feed beans prices are currently around 185 ex withlittle interest.

Human Consumption beans
Export markets remain quiet and the market appears to be waitingfor Ramadan and the festival of Eid (the religiousholiday celebrated by Muslims that marks the end of Ramadan)to end at the beginning of August. As a result, tradingis sluggish and values appear to be sliding a little as aresult. Spring beans do, however, now command a premium of15-20 over feed.  Importers can see significant stocks in thelocal market and cargos from Australia have been larger thanthe previous year. French crop is being offered in the Egyptianmarket at US$480/T bulk delivered. Bruchid levels will be determined afterharvest when all round quality can properly be evaluated.

Currency values will present challenges to exporters with exchangerates at USD1.7/  making imports more expensive for customers.

Combining Peas
Harvest started mid July and it appears that there will be someby-passed vining peas making their way into the early dry pea markettoo. Most pea crops in the southeast have been desiccated,and despite the regional downpours, subsequent dry weathershould see them fine.

Quality is expected to be good, but locally yield and quality mayhave suffered if caught with poor weather. With harvest underway, themarkets are changing as expected but with very few samples toguide at present, markets will change in the forthcoming weeks.

The blue pea market is currently being affected by cheapCanadian imports. Superior samples with good colour can command apremium of around 40 at +/-280/t ex, but low grade andpale blues will be very difficult to market and at adiscount 100/t. Once more samples have been seen and a betterfeel for the quality and yield of this seasons crop is gauged, the marketwill fluctuate accordingly.

Marrowfat peas are strong with nil stocks. Good quality sampleswill command circa 325-350/t.


  • Written by: Farmers Guide
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