The UK looks set to remain a net-importer of wheat for a second consecutive season, according to the latest market report from the HGCA.

The extreme weather last year, hit production and quality, ramping up the need for imports, while reduced plantings for the 2013 harvest look set to bring in a shorter crop this season.

In terms of the impact of this on price, by moving from a surplus in the UK to a deficit means prices need to realign to restrict export competitiveness and stimulate imports, it said. 

“Although this results in a noticeable change in the domestic prices, it is relatively small considered against the volatility of the world market,” said Jack Watts, senior analyst at Agriculture & Horticulture Development Board (AHDB).

The forward price for a delivered tonne of wheat in Northamptonshire, in June 2013, currently stands at around £201.00 per tonne (p/t).

In related news, UK wheat availability has been revised upwards, by 275Kt, to 17.29Mt, compared to March 2013, however it is a 2% decrease on the comparable period last year, according to Defra’s latest 2012/13 UK cereal supply and demand estimates.

It noted that the increase was entirely due to the hike in the import estimate, to 2.54Mt, from 908Kt in 2011/12.