Frontier contract to help offset financial risk of growing OSR

LinkedIn +

Frontier has introduced a new contract that it says will remove much of the financial risk associated with growing oilseed rape, helping growers to protect the resilience of their farm businesses.

Frontier’s oilseed rape de-risking partnership is an exclusive offer that ensures growers who fulfil certain contract requirements only pay for oilseed rape seed that survives the key establishment window. Any grower using Frontier’s agronomy services is eligible for the contract, including new customers and those who only use it for the oilseed rape crop.

Seed director, Sam Brooke, explains: “Oilseed rape remains a profitable break crop for UK growers, but its success is heavily dependent on good establishment.

“This has become increasingly challenging in recent seasons given the impact of difficult weather and continued threats such as cabbage stem flea beetle. The resilience of farm businesses is critical for continuity of supply, but when shouldering much of the risk associated with growing the crop it can be difficult for some farmers to justify it in the rotation – it needs to be commercially sustainable.”

Thanks to its end-to-end supply relationships, Frontier is uniquely placed to provide farmers with additional security. Sam continues: “Through our de-risking model we hope farmers can make the most of strong market opportunities for oilseed rape without having to bear the financial burden in a scenario where the crop fails.”

Frontier’s commitments

Under the scheme, Frontier will defer the payment on oilseed rape and accompanying companion crop seed until September 2025, as long as orders are placed before September 2024 via Frontier, Kings Crops, GFP Agriculture or Belmont Seeds.

For any oilseed rape that fails to establish by 31st October, the seed cost will be entirely waived (or partially if only some of the crop fails).

“With the deferred payment, growers will benefit from an upfront cost saving of approximately £90/ha on any of the seed, plus £33/ha on the accompanying companion crop,” adds seed business development manager, Jim Knightbraid.

Through Frontier’s agronomy service, growers will be supported with everything from variety selection to suit the geography of the farm through to rotational planning, establishment considerations, timing and input strategies.

Support for companion cropping

A condition of the contract is that growers must sow an approved Kings Crops companion crop alongside their oilseed rape. Jim explains: “We are confident that companion crops have a positive role to play in the establishment of oilseed rape. Additionally, a payment of £55/ha is available for companion cropping under the IPM3 action of the Sustainable Farming Incentive. This funding provides an additional buffer against the cost of establishing oilseed rape.”

Expertise around the most appropriate companion crop mix to use will be available to committed growers via Kings Crops’ technical advisors, who will also provide support on mix selection and management under the SFI rules.

Share this story:

About Author