The national bean crop typically covers around 170,000 hectares each year. Average yields for the UK crop are almost 5 tonnes per hectare and prices are currently about £170 per tonne. Beans are an important pulse crop grown mainly for their seed which is rich in protein. They make an excellent break crop due to their nitrogen fixing ability, ability to add organic matter to the soil and because they allow control of problem weeds. Beans require lower inputs of fertiliser and pesticide than wheat. The major human consumption market for beans is the Middle East and high quality beans get a premium price in this market.