Malting barley of correct quality is in short supply, as H.M. Gauger writes in his newest market report. The harvest on the European continent is finished and advances well in the U.K. and Scandinavia. Qualities are good in France, Denmark and Sweden, but problematic to poor in Germany, the U.K., Central Europe and the Mediterranean countries. Supplies will be extremely tight, higher protein contents and lower sieving parameters in some countries must become acceptable.
Small crops in North America and anticipated much smaller crops than last year in South America and Australia result in a deficit – which is still speculative because crops in Canada and parts of northern Europe are not yet harvested yet.
H.M. Gauger sees a total surplus of malting barley (both winter and spring) of 3.5 million tons from Europe, Canada and Australia and on the other hand a deficit of 4.7 million tons from China, Russia, Turkey, Africa and mostly likely also Latin America.
The overall predicted deficit of 1.2 million tons will be filled by relaxed contract parameters, usage of marginal varieties, increased use of adjuncts, purchases of malt instead of barley and overlapping crops in the northern and southern hemisphere.
World markets prices for malting barley and hence also malt have become firmer, and the trend may continue.