Grain markets calmed down this week, having initially reacted to the US weather and taken a jump about three weeks ago.

The impact of that weather will continue to have a big influence on decision making and farmers here should be keeping an eye on the US corn crop’s progress as the competitiveness of corn last season is what drove barley and wheat prices down.

Cheaper maize was used in feed rations this past season and barley or wheat could not compete.

Last week (May 27-31), new crop barley and wheat prices saw an increase – dry barley was trading at €180.00/t – on the back of increased corn prices. However, that dropped back slightly this week (June 3-7) to a dry barley price of approximately €175/t.

Crop condition

Crops of wheat are reported to be in generally good condition in the EU, Russia and Ukraine with no major reports of problem crops.

Planting progress in the US as of June 2:

  • Corn was 67% complete – 29% behind the five-year average (96%) for the time of year;
  • Soybeans were 39% complete – 40% behind the five-year average (79%) for the time of year.

It is also important to take note of crop condition and on June 2 approximately 46% of US corn had emerged, compared to the five-year average for the time of year of 84%.


LIFFE wheat for November closed on Monday, June 3, at £157.95/t, but decreased as the week went on moving to £155.10/t on Tuesday and 152.15/t on Wednesday. On Friday morning it was at £152.00/t.

The July price was trading at £156.35/t on Monday, but took a drop almost £7.00/t during the week and on Friday morning had settled at £149.50/t.


MATIF wheat for December told a similar story to LIFFE wheat. It finished at €188.25/t on Monday, June 3, but decreased throughout the week, dropping to €185.50/t on Tuesday. By Friday morning it sat at €182.50/t.

September wheat was trading lower. Having closed at €185.25/t on Monday it finished at €179.50/t on Thursday.


CBOT wheat also took a hit, from 519.75c/bu on Monday, June 3, to 510.00c/bu on Thursday. The price hit a low in between times when it dropped to 490.75c/bu on Wednesday.

FOB Creil (two-row malting barley)

Free-On-Board (FOB) Creil remained at €190.00/t on Monday and Tuesday, June 3 and 4, of this week. On Wednesday it dropped by €2.00/t to €188.00/t.

AgriLand reported where the average harvest price for Boortmalt suppliers stands this week. It had reached an average price of €188.44/t on May 29.