New figures released by Copa and Cogeca in Brussels show that EU cereal production is expected to rise by 0.4% this year, compared to 2016, and EU oilseeds production by 1.6%, mainly as a result of better weather conditions in some countries.
Speaking at the meeting, Chairman of Copa and Cogecas’ Cereal Working Party Max Schulman said “This year’s EU cereals harvest is expected to be 0.4% up on last year’s levels, reaching 298 million tonnes, but it is still below the 5 year average. This is mainly due to more favourable weather conditions in some Member States compared to the disastrous weather events seen last year. Some countries have nevertheless been experiencing frost and drought this year, especially France and southern Member States, and the variable conditions are likely to impact on the quality of EU production. Favourable prospects in the USA, Canada, Kazakstan could also affect the market balance. Grain stocks nevertheless remain quite low and farmers question the accuracy of the level of carry over in the EU as a signal from the livestock sector which shows some difficulties in getting the necessary volumes”.
Mike Hambly Copa & Cogeca Vice-Chairman of Copa and Cogeca’s Oilseeds Working Party stressed “EU oilseeds production is expected to be up 1.6% this year reaching 32.2 million tonnes. EU rapeseed production is back to an average of 21 million tonnes which will ensure EU livestock producers have a good supply of protein crops to feed their animals. We have seen a shift towards winter rapeseed production this year due to the better weather conditions seen over the winter period which explains the higher production levels and increased yields.
Producers are nevertheless being squeezed by low prices and high production costs, as a result of the suspension of neonicotinoid seed treatments, which meant the area under oilseeds did not rise. Without neonicotinoid seed treatments and without alternative products, farmers end up having to spray their crops much more frequently which causes a big cost increase”.
Tuesday July 4, 20177 Copa-Cogeca/ European Union.