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News 225 views last update:6 Aug 2012

Drought reduces EU cereals production

Cereals production in the EU will be down by over 5% in 2006/07 compared to last year because of poor weather conditions, warned the EU farmers union Copa-Cogeca.

Total EU cereals production is estimated to fall by 5.4%, down from 282.2 mt last year to 266.8 mt in 2006/07, while overall yields are expected to drop from 4.81t per hectare to 4.71t per hectare. This drop in production and yield is seen across the board; soft wheat, for instance, will see a fall in production of 6.5% with a reduced yield of 5.34t per hectare compared to 5.50t per ha last year. Copa-Cogeca forecasts that even greater production losses will be true of maize, rye, oats and triticale, with falls in production of 8.4%, 16.9%, 1.8% and 15.8% respectively.

These falls in production and yield are felt throughout the EU. Production of soft wheat, for example, is expected to fall from 5.0mt in 2005/06 to 4.4mt in 2006/07 in Hungary and from 8.8mt to 7.1mt in Poland, the largest producers in the new member states.

Similar losses are forecast in France and Germany, with Copa-Cogeca estimating that the former will see a reduction in production from 34.9mt to 33.1 mt, while Germany can expect a fall from 23.6mt to 22.4mt in the production of soft wheat.

Increased barley output
Barley seems, however, to be made of sterner stuff and production is forecast to increase by 2% in the whole of the EU, up from 54.8 mt in 2005/06 to 55.9 mt a year later. Spain and France are both expected to see an increase in the production of this crop, up from 4.5 mt to 8.3 mt, and up from 10.4 mt to 10.5 mt respectively. However, Germany and Poland are forecast to see a fall in the production of barley, with a reduction from 11.6 mt to 12.1 mt in the former and from 3.6 mt to 3.2 mt in Poland.

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