Although details have yet to be announced, the UK government has confirmed that it will be suspending all tariffs on goods from Ukraine for a period, likely to be a minimum of 12 months.
The EU Commission has announced similar proposals meaning that there will be no tariffs between Ukraine and European trade partners in agrifood and other goods. Although temporary, it would not be surprising if this suspension lasted for some years.
Markets continue to be very strong, and there is little expectation that fighting will cease anytime soon, meaning that the expectations of diminished supply from Ukraine are becoming inevitable.
Market developments in North America are also not helping at present as there is prolonged dryness in the spring wheat areas. High fertiliser prices are encouraging US farmers to favour soya over maize as input costs are lower, which is helping to maintain a bullish sentiment for grains.
Closer to home, food price inflation continues to grow – but the same applies to virtually all developed economies faced with the challenges of higher energy, fuel, labour and commodity costs.
UK Flour Millers continues to engage with government to highlight the challenges.