North African grain buyers are planning a UK visit in January 2001, after recent positive discussions about UK grain quality in Morocco and Tunisia with a delegation organised by HGCA.

Simon Browne, chairman of HGCA's British Cereal Exports, who attended the meetings last week, commented: "Representatives from both countries are keen to see what the UK has to offer, particularly as they are having problems sourcing the right quality wheat from France, which is one of their traditional suppliers.

"In particular they are interested in Group 2 wheats, such as Charger, to blend for breadmaking purposes.

"Bad experiences in the past have led to some reticence by Moroccan and Tunisian buyers to deal with the UK, but they seem to be more convinced that we can provide the right quality. The meetings last week were extremely encouraging, and we hope the visit in January will reinforce the message that UK growers can deliver the product they require."

The visit, which is being organised by British Cereal Exports, will show the buyers the grain chain process, from on-farm production, through to storage facilities and milling.