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How profitable will the crop be for UK farmers?

Колко доходна ще бъде реколтата за фермерите в Обединеното кралство?

Farmers on the Island have faced more than a 50 percent drop in profits this year.

Profits may recover slightly for the 2023/24 crop, but will still remain well below the levels seen in 2021 and 2022, according to Strutt & Parker's latest survey.

Andrew Atkinson, farming consultant at Strutt & Parker warned that this year's crop could be one of the worst in financial terms. He blames this on inflationary pressures on production costs at a time when grain prices are falling.

The net profit in 2023 for a higher performing farm achieving higher yields and lower fixed costs is projected to be around £364/ha. However, this will be 52 percent less than 2022 and 42 percent less than 2021.

"The 2022 crop was a profitable year for those farmers who bought most of their inputs before the huge increase in input costs and took advantage of selling during the big increase in grain prices."

Fertilizer prices have soared to around £1,000/t in spring 2022, while feed wheat prices have fallen by nearly £150/t compared to the same period a year earlier.

"The subsequent huge increase in fertilizer prices, together with falling commodity prices in recent months, means that the 2023 crop could turn out to be one of the worst in financial terms for several years," the analyst is emphatic.

According to him, volatility is nothing new for British farmers, but the extent of it in the last 24 months is unprecedented and it is this year that the "pain" will be felt on many farms.

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