"June is an important month for crop farmers in the Northern Hemisphere as it is the month when haymaking begins, in preparation for its use to feed livestock over the coming winter. 

The sixth month of the year also sees potatoes receive a thorough watering in order to encourage growth and the 'filling out' of the crop, whilst the grain storage facilities are being cleaned and inspected ahead of the harvest, with any remedial works being undertaken.

The time around the end of May and the start of June also means the beginning of the summer show season. This can be a yearly highlight for many farmers, and some will choose to show off their livestock at country shows and fairs. Typically, the show season will finish before harvest time, as otherwise the two would clash and the harvest would be smaller or of a lower quality.

On the subject of shows, I write with great anticipation with Cereals 2022 looming ever larger on the horizon. I am happy to announce that Milling and Grain magazine will be attending that one, along with the International Grain Conference which is taking place in London in the same week.

Staying with the subject of grains, as we get deeper into June, the conflict in Ukraine looks like it will soon be in its fifth month, with all of us around the world beginning to feel the effects at the fuel pump and on our supermarket and utility bills. 

In addition to the crisis in Ukraine, the global markets have also been struck by soya crop problems in Latin America, with oilmeal/protein costs have been driven up by tightening supplies of the two next largest components, rapeseed and sunflower seed. 

In a similar fashion, rapeseed/canola's problems started with Canada's drought-hit 2021 crop and tightening stock situations there and in Europe. Latterly, the Ukrainian crisis has enveloped both of these alternative oilseed sources, blocking exports of both oilseeds to their biggest customers in the EU. 

The crop is mainly spring-sown and at this stage is seen on a moderately larger area but will need more moisture in the weeks ahead to avoid below par yields. As in the cereal markets, the main worry is how Ukraine will manage to sow and harvest its crops in the weeks and months ahead. 

Hopefully, Australia, which has emerged as a larger than expected rapeseed exporter in the past year or two, will be able to offer some supply relief – although there will be plenty of other customers around the globe looking to this origin to solve their own problems.


As has been the case these past few years through the pandemic and its associated ramifications, the best course of action is to just sit tight, and watch what happens next!"

To read more content like this, visit the Milling and Grain archive HERE.

Cover image courtesy of Don Wright on Flickr
Under licence CC by 2.0

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