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High erucic acid rape (HEAR)

High erucic acid rape (HEAR) can offer growers significant premiums. 

At Frontier, we have some exclusive buyback contract opportunities available for HEAR and can support you with all aspects of production, from sourcing the seed to marketing the crop.






The benefits of growing HEAR

HEAR can command higher premiums.

The oil profile of HEAR is different to '00' oilseed rape, which makes it a niche crop in the market.

No specialist crop management required.

HEAR is the same plant species as standard oilseed rape so the work required to grow it is the same.

No need to compromise on yield.

Trials work has shown that HEAR varieties yield just as well as 00 oilseed rape crops.



Excellent contract opportunities

Although the high erucic market is a niche one, it is one with significant demand and Frontier is able to offer HEAR growers competitive contracts as part of a secure, long term supply chain.

For 2024/2025 crops:


checkbox The ‘produce of area’ contract option involves no risk of default
checkbox Growers have the ability to fix their base price
checkbox There is potential to achieve an additional £90/tonne 
checkbox Growers can receive an additional £2,500 per load of HEAR leaving the farm gate 
checkbox The contracts are an opportunity to access new and exclusive varieties.




How does Frontier market HEAR?

HEAR or more importantly, erucic acid, is a key building block in the production of erucamide for polymer production. Eucamide is a slip agent used in products such as plastic bottles as a friction modifier, it enables you to release the cap from the bottle, it is also used in printing inks, automotive components, engineering lubricants and food packaging - enabling fresh produce to have a greater shelf life resulting in reduced food waste.

Part of the production process also results in a by-product of meal. This is produced after oil extraction and is used widely in ruminant animal feed.

Once the crop is harvested, it’s taken to a crushing plant in Liverpool and the crude oil is supplied to Cargill Bioindustrial, both of which are owned by our parent company, Cargill. Cargill Bioindustrial produces the erucamide and is a global leader in novel polymer and additive technology, and Frontier has an exclusive, long term supply agreement with Cargill Bioindustrial.

Supply chain management

Growers who commit to a Frontier HEAR contract benefit from end-to-end transparency within the supply chain.

Our expert seed and trials teams monitor the performance of HEAR varieties to ensure we only supply high quality, vigorous varieties, while our BASIS-qualified agronomists are on hand to advise on establishment, crop health and overall management.

Once the crop is harvested it’s taken to a crushing plant in Hull and supplied to Croda Europe Ltd, both of which are owned by our parent company, Cargill. Croda is one of the world’s largest oleochemical producers and a global leader in novel polymer and additive technology, and Frontier has an exclusive, long term supply agreement with Croda.


   1   2  
   Frontier supplies seed to HEAR growers   Expert agronomists on hand to support crop production  
  3   4  
  Harvested product is taken to Cargill’s crush in Hull  

The oil is extracted and supplied to Croda






HEAR varieties

variety 1

variety 2


A vigorous hybrid variety with an early maturity profile. Renowned for its high yield potential, Ramses produces a high oil and erucic acid content. It is tall strawed and has low lodging risk when managed with a plant growth regulator.

  • Early flowering variety with a mid-early harvest maturity
  • Very good early vigour supports autumn establishment
  • Strong stemmed variety with low lodging risk
  • Very high yield potential with high oil and erucic acid content

Disease profile  

  • Light leaf spot – Low susceptibility
  • Phoma stem canker – Low susceptibility
  • Lodging resistance – Good


A particularly early flowering variety with a similar harvest maturity to Ramses. Rhodes provides high disease resistance, especially to light leaf spot. Though it is still a tall variety, Rhodes is slightly shorter than Ramses and has very good resistance to lodging.

  • Vigorous autumn establishment and over-winter growth habit
  • Very early to flower and mid-early harvest maturity
  • Very high gross output potential  

Disease profile

  • Light leaf spot – Very low susceptibility
  • Phoma stem canker – Low susceptibility
  • Lodging resistance –  Very good




Support with growing HEAR

While HEAR doesn’t require any specialist management, it does need the same care and attention as 00 oilseed rape crops.

Factors such as drilling date, soil type, seedbed quality, moisture, pest pressure and drill accuracy are all important to consider. More guidance around oilseed rape establishment can be found here.

In terms of handling the grain, it’s important that HEAR is stored separately from 00 oilseed rape to safeguard quality and specification. 

 berseem and osr ls

Companion cropping 

As with standard oilseed rape varieties, the adoption of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies can also support the establishment of HEAR crops. Companion crops can provide a range of benefits for oilseed rape including a defence against pests, improving soil health, boosting nutrition and encouraging pollinators.

Frontier’s specialist crops division, Kings Crops, offers three varieties of companion crop seed mixes. For more information and to contact an advisor, please visit the Kings website. 


To enquire about marketing opportunities or to learn more about the support available when growing HEAR, speak to your Frontier representative or complete the form below.

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