With oilseed rape values seemingly void of the volatility that has affected wheat prices of late the decision as to which spring cropping option is likely to give the best return seems fairly clear-cut.
Frontier Agricultureâs Northern Commercial Seed Manager David Waite is expecting strong interest in spring oilseed rape this season as growers seek to take advantage of the favourable prices.
âOilseed values are far more supported than wheat prices at the moment. The high price of crude oil of $118/barrel coupled with the EU oil embargo of Iran is helping to sustain prices for European oilseeds while the demand for Soya, principally from Asia, puts another floor in the market that supports EU prices.â
For those looking for a variety that combines the ability to stand strong and mature early with the hybrid vigour to establish fast even in difficult seasons, Frontier is has a specific recommendation: Delight.
It is one of two hybrid varieties the company is offering to growers this season and is being promoted as the most suitable option for those needing an early maturing crop with strong hybrid attributes.
âDelight has good all-round characteristics with a high gross output. It performed well with growers and fits in well, particularly with those in the north where the pressure to get crops off in good time is high.â
At about £360/tonne, November 2012 oilseed rape futures are maintaining a healthy premium over feed wheat which is currently trading at around £150/t for the same time. But recent reports suggest that wheatâs position is set to be eroded by high stock levels and a favourable corn (maize) harvest in the United States.
âA large new-crop production shortfall would be required to bring wheat prices back to trading at a sustainable premium to corn prices later this year,â said Goldman Sachs in a recent market comment.
The statement came after the US Department for Agriculture released its monthly World Supply and Demand Estimate (WASDE) which put wheat ending stocks for the 2012-13 season at an all-time high of 213m tonnes â 3m tonnes higher than the previous monthâs estimate.Delight is the earliest maturing restored hybrid on the HGCA 2012 Descriptive List with a gross output of 101% and one of the most impressive suites of agronomic scores.
Les Daubney from Limagrain says the variety has shown great resilience since it was first listed in 2009. âDelight has proven its credentials as a solid performer over what have been some challenging seasons. Its gross output has consistently been towards the higher end of the table and its strong set of agronomic features has installed it as a favourite among growers looking for an early maturing variety with less management requirements than a winter variety.â