EU Cereal Harvest Up 16 Per Cent

EU - The European Union’s total cereal harvest this year should see an increse of 16 percent on last year, according to a European Commission report.
calendar icon 11 August 2008
clock icon 2 minute read

Wheat is expected to be up 4.8 percent, barley 5 percent, and maize (corn) 20 percent. The predicted increases are seen as positive news, but low global stocks will continue to impact prices.

Favourable weather conditions and an increase in the planted area farmed should result in this years EU cereals harvest being near to 301 million tonnes, 43 million tonnes more than in 2007.

This represents an increase of 16% on the 2007 harvest and 9% on the past five years' average production.

The yield forecast for cereals is 5 tonnes per hectare across the EU and thus significantly higher than last year and the average over the past five years. The total EU27 area used for cereals in 2008 is estimated to have increased by 5 % compared to 2007, due to a 0 % set-aside rate and high cereals prices.

The report quotes the latest yield forecasts for individual crop figures across the EU27 based on an average over the past five years as follows:

  • Soft wheat: 5.6 t/ha (+4.8%)
  • Durum wheat: 3.1 t/ha (+12.8%)
  • Barley: 4.4 t/ha (+5.7%)
  • Grain maize: 6.9 t/ha (+9.5%)
  • Rape seed: 2.9 t/ha (-2,1%)
  • Sunflower: 1.6 t/ha (+1.7%)
  • Potato: 26.5 t/ha (-1.1%)
  • Sugar beet: 70.3 t/ha (+19.0%)
The greatest increase is for sugar beet, cultivated mainly in northern Europe, with the main producers Germany and France, which benefited from favourable meteorological conditions, increasing yield forecasts significantly.

Maize (corn) yield is expected to be 20.1% higher than last year and 9.5% higher than the past five years' average, with very high yield increases for Romania (+122%), Bulgaria (+193%) and Hungary (+94%), countries that had been suffering from drought last year.

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