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BEPA Pulse Market Update

By Peter Smith, President of BEPA.

Commodity prices reached record highs in early February sparking more debate at government level …..

Peter Smith, President of BEPA, reports:


Commodity prices reached record highs in early February sparking more debate at government level about food security.

This spike is all about milk, meat, sugar and oilseeds rather than wheat and rice as in 2008: more the influence of changing diets in the East rather than shortages of staples which caused the rioting last time. Although some prices have eased back in the interim, such underlying causes suggest these prices are set to remain high in the long-term.

World stocks of wheat, maize, and soybeans remain tight, and the Japanese and North African uncertainties are increasing volatility both being major importing regions.

The CAP reform should mean there will be measures to encourage protein crops MEPs voted to back this on March 8th. The French government has confirmed their 39million subsidy for  2011, which is equivalent to 160-180/ha.

Growers who have planted pulses for 2011 harvest will find prices very good and supplies short. We hope they also get sufficient rain after a very dry March.

Feed Beans

Very few beans around for feed markets and prices are too high, even if there were any to sell. Soybeans prices are still high.

Human Consumption Beans

A few boats loaded for Egypt last month, but old crop is virtually sold out. The French sent about 31,000 tonnes to Egypt in January. It could be we are seeing the trend of last year repeated when UK exports only took off in the autumn.


Interest in well-coloured samples remains good, but acreages will mean limited supplies in 2011.

Blue Peas

Feed customers are mopping up the remaining blues, but there is every sign that the acreage has dropped significantly with the recent prices. Shortages for micronising in 2011 now seem inevitable.

Yellow Peas

Both French exports and internal feed uses doubled over the past 12 months, and exports to Norway for fish feed reached 50,000 tonnes. They have made good use of their expanded production, but the feed uptake remains disappointing.




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