Fact of the Day – The Flanders poppy was one of the first plants to grow on the blood-soaked battlefields of France and Belgium. In nineteenth century English poetry, poppies often symbolised sleep or oblivion. After WWI, silk poppies were sold on Rememberance Day with proceeds going to a charity for French children and to the Returned Soldiers League (RSL).

Scattered showers and cooler days over the past week have been a more than welcome site, though there is still an abundance of moisture still needed for struggling summer crops. Even though the outlook appears grim, with current harvest coming to an end, there is still more time up growers sleeves to reap a degree of reward from the sorghum and cotton crops in months ahead. The sorghum market has softened in the last week with scattered rain and cool weather playing its part and cotton has been quite bearish too. As Guns N’ Roses put it “we can still find a way, cause nothing lasts forever, even cold November rain”, now it’s not directly applicable, but we get the gist, a hope of an ending drought and continuous rain to end the year. Across the seas, oil prices have plunged for yet another session, with prices down by $20/barrel. This is due to a number of factors, one being Trump chasing lower prices and no cuts to production in retaliation to OPEC’s reports on decreasing their output of barrels per day. This also does impact the corn market in regards to their ethanol. Trump, supply, a murdered Saudi journalist and OPEC are all what will influences the market, but more importantly, our fuel prices here at home, so fill up today!

Marketing your pulses is definitely worth the thought as we are closing in on the end of the 2018 year and season. In regards to old crop, the market buyers (Pakistan, Bangladesh and Middle East) are still chasing tonnes for export, and this has been shown through the $120/mt increase in price over the past ten days. Narrabri delivery is bid at $770/mt with the Downs bid more competitively at $780/mt. The old/new crop spread has now shifted, minimising the gap by $100/mt and stands between $20-$30/mt, dependant on location. New crop is priced at $820 Narrabri and $835 Oakey. To put it bluntly, the season has been quite disappointing, though if history is on our side, we should expect to see demand pick up further as we move in to first few months of 2019. Faba beans continue to fair strongly, with bids of 18/19 season top grade beans at $780 delivered Narrabri, old crop remains floating at the $630 ex-farm level for now.

Cotton futures have had a consecutive loss over the past three days, this is purely put down to small weather concerns and lack of investor selling. For now, across prime growing areas, irrigating and planting is still in full swing, and doesn’t look to be slowing down with more disappointing forecasts. Though, as I stated last week, the market will look for guidance in the coming weeks from the G20 summit. Hopefully some constructive negotiations between China and the US are signed off on to put this trade war to bed. Prices today for seasons ahead now stand at 2019 $605, 2020 $600 and $530/bale for 2021 and 2022 (at time of writing).

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