Revealed: New malting price deal proposal between Boortmalt and IFA

A meeting of malting barley growers – who supply Boortmalt – is underway tonight (Monday, February 4) in Co. Carlow.

The meeting, which is being held by the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA), outlined a new proposed price deal between Boortmalt and the IFA for malting barley in the season ahead.

The proposed deal has been negotiated between Boortmalt and the IFA over the past few months and the IFA will return to Boortmalt on Wednesday (February 6) once it has met with growers.

The new price will be based on the FOB (free on board) Creil malting barley price (two-row varieties). The French price was at €192.50/t (dry) on Friday February 1.

This dried French price will be used as the Boortmalt green price – at a base price of 20% moisture. The listed FOB Creil price will be the base price here in Ireland and subject to moisture bonuses or reductions.

The price will be averaged over a period from the middle of April to the middle of September.

At close of business on Wednesday of each week of the year, from weeks 14 to 36, the price will be taken and averaged to give a final harvest price in September. At present this structure will replace the option to forward sell barley.

Distilling price

A premium of €10/t over the malting barley price is currently on the table for distilling barley and Pat Farrell – IFA grain executive – stated it is hoped this premium will stay in place and may rise.

70/30 split

AgriLand understands that the 70/30 split of malting and distilling barley, which growers are required to supply on their contract, will be looked after in house where possible.

This means if one region is producing distilling grade barley and another region has malting barley with higher protein contents – suitable for malting specifications – the 70/30 split will not fall to the grower.

Transport

However, in a move away from recent tradition, no transport subsidy will be paid to farmers for the delivery of their grain. The FOB Creil price is the delivered price.

This will affect farmers from regions who, for example, traditionally supplied branches like Bagenalstown, Co. Carlow, and Emo, Co. Laois.

Farmers who delivered grain to branches which were closed down over the years were previously able to avail of a transport subsidy once a certain level of inputs were bought from Boortmalt.

Fixed price

Farmers who availed of the €230/t fixed price in September will still avail of that price on 20% of their contract. It will include any transport allowance that was agreed in 2018.

AgriLand will keep readers updated on any other details from the meeting, as well as the consensus on the ground regarding the deal.

Update

IFA grain committee chairman, Mark Browne, has stated that this deal guarantees a premium over feed barley.

If the FOB Creil price drops below feed barley price in Ireland malting growers will be paid a premium over feed barley, but the price is not clear if this occurs.