Monday, 15 February 2016

The 1952 barley crop (part three)

We’re back with barley. This time on the island of Ireland, both sides of the border.

First the Republic of Ireland:

 “The Eire Ministry of Agriculture report says that in Southern Ireland prices paid to growers for malting barley, bought on a quota basis, were 37s. 6d. per cwt., with feeding barley from 24s. to 26s. per cwt. ex farm. ”
"Brewer's Guardian 1953", 1953, February page 13.

That’s a bit irritating, quoting the price per cwt., while the UK prices were per 400 lb quarter. Do you want me to translate that into a price per quarter? ‘Course you do. Here you go:

Irish barley prices in 1953
type shillings per cwt. shillings per 400 lb quarter
malting barley 37.5 133.9
feed barley min. 24 85.7
feed barley max. 26 92.9


Scottish barley prices in 1953
type shillings per cwt. shillings per 400 lb quarter
malting barley min. 33.6 120
malting barley max. 40.6 145
feed barley max. 29.12 104


English barley prices in 1953
type shillings per cwt. shillings per 400 lb quarter
malting barley min. 33.6 120.0
malting barley max. 43.4 155.0

You can see that there was little difference between the Republic of Ireland and the UK in terms of malting barley prices, but feed barley seems to have been a little cheaper.

Sadly nothing about the price of barley in Northern Ireland, just the quantity grown:

“In 1952 in Northern Ireland the yield from 5,399 acres was 6,500 tons compared with 3,300 tons in 1951 from 2,919 acres. ”
"Brewer's Guardian 1953", 1953, February pages 13 - 14.

Isn’t that interesting? They planted almost double the area of land with barley in 1952 that they did in 1953. Though both in terms of the amount of land planted and the amount of barley produced it was relatively insignificant compared to the whole of the UK, even after the big jump in 1952. N. Ireland was still responsible for less than 1% of the total. As this table shows:

Barley acreage and output UK and N. Ireland 1951 - 1952
UK N. Ireland % N. Ireland
year acres tons acres tons acres tons
1951 1,908,000 1,939,000 2,919 3,300 0.15% 0.17%
1952 2,281,000 2,334,000 5,399 6,500 0.24% 0.28%
Sources:
"Brewer's Guardian 1953", 1953, February page 14.
1971 Brewers' Almanack, page 61.

Next time we’ll be looking at the complicated relationship between Guinness and Irish barley growers.

1 comment:

marquis said...

How things have moved on , yields of around 1 ton/acre in 1952.
Average barley yield in 2012 for the UK was around 2.25 tons/acre.