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CASTLE MALTING NEWS in partnership with www.e-malt.com Greek
22 July, 2021

Barley news Ireland: Winter barley harvest kicks off in near perfect weather conditions

Ireland’s harvest has kicked off in near continental weather conditions, with winter barley yields generally running from 3.5t/ac to 4.25t/ac and moistures at 15-16pc, the Independent reported on July 20.

Growers report near perfect harvesting conditions and the expectation is that the bulk of the winter barley crop could be cleared up across the southern half of the country ahead of a forecast change in the weather this weekend.

A big variation in both yields and kph has been reported over the first few days of cutting. The best of the yields appear to be in the Kilkenny area, with one merchant reporting that winter barley crops were generally averaging around 4t/ac, with some coming close to 4.5t/ac. One grower in south Tipperary said crops were generally averaging 3.7t/ac, with yields in the north of the county ranging from 3.3t/ac to 3.8t/ac. In south Laois and Carlow, crops were reported to be yielding around 3.7t/ac.

Low kph over the weekend was blamed on crops not being 100pc ripe. The kph for many early crops was in the low 60s, but had climbed to the mid-60s by yesterday.

The current moisture levels of around 15-16pc will deliver up to €10/t of a bonus, given that base prices are set off of a 20pc reference.

However, Michael Hennessy of Teagasc predicted that average moistures could hit as low as 11-12pc this week, given that temperatures are forecast to reach 30C. The base price for barley is forecast to settle at around €175-€180/t, but this could vary up or down by €10-€15/t depending on global harvest progress and

Meanwhile, straw crops are also reported to be good. And with strong livestock farmer demand, many grain growers were reported to be keen on getting crops baled in case the weather deteriorated this weekend.

Up to €20/bale (for 4x4 bales) has been offered for straw already this harvest. However, there are suggestions that prices could ease back given the strength of the straw crop and the abundance of fodder in the country.

In other harvest news, Bobby Miller of the Irish Grain Growers (IGG) urged merchants and co-ops to reflect the value of locally-produced grain in the prices offered to farmers.

Mr Miller claimed that there was greater demand for Irish grain this harvest because of the increased cost of shipping feedstuffs.


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