Achtung Baby

17/11/10 -- The gun-jumping, rule-loving Germans appear to have shot themselves in the foot by deciding to implement the the EU's Renewable Fuels Directive at the first available opportunity - Jan 1st next year.

Only their best mates Austria are doing likewise, whist the rest of Europe busy themselves with thinking about it. "There's so much to do at this time of year isn't there, with presents to wrap and everything," said one MEP. "We'll have a look at the job in the New Year once the kids go back to school," he added.

By introducing the new ruling Germany's rapeseed and rapeoil imports must conform to the legislation that stipulates that all such raw materials must come from certified sustainable farms. And right now those are pretty few and far between across the rest of Europe.

The German oilseeds industry association Ufop would like us laggards to get our fingers out and implement the directive ourselves asap. As without the necessary paperwork German imports could grind to a half shortly after Christmas. Ho, ho, ho.

Meanwhile Ufop are forecasting a German rapeseed crop of 5.5-6.0 MMT in 2011 (compared to 5.7 MMT this year), which is better than most other forecasts of a reduction of up to 10% on the back of a reduced area due to saturated soils at planting time.