Italy’s Barilla Group, the world’s largest producer of pasta, is offering to set a minimum price for its purchases of durum wheat, Italy’s leading business daily said Nov. 28, citing the company.
In the face of falls of up to 30 per cent in durum wheat planting this autumn, Barilla is offering to cover farmers’ production costs via its minimum price in exchange for an effort on quality, Il Sole 24 Ore said.
Barilla wants to improve Italian supplies of durum wheat and reduce imports from countries such as Australia and the United States, the paper said.
The innovative pricing will strengthen links with Barilla’s network of farmers under existing contracts, it said.
There is no shortage of durum wheat in stock at present but the fear is that a sharp fall in planting could produce serious problems on prices and availability of product as seen two years ago, the newspaper said.
Italy’s Coldiretti’s farmers group is forecasting a 15-23 per cent fall in areas planted with durum wheat this autumn, while the newspaper talked of a 30 per cent fall in planting.