EU to record higher grain harvests in MY2021/22 following higher than expected spring rainfall

EUROPE – The  European Union (EU) grain production is forecast at 293.3 MMT (million metric tonnes), over 13 MMT higher than the previous marketing year’s volume largely due heavy rains in April and May that replenished soil moisture and improved yield potential. 

According to recent GAIN reports released by the United States Department of Agriculture, grain production is set to rebound in France, Germany, Romania, Hungary, the Benelux, Bulgaria, and Ireland, helping uplift the region’s total grain production. 

Going to specific grains, the reports forecast EU’s wheat production to reach 138.4 MMT due to higher than previously anticipated plantings in Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, and Estonia.  

The corn production estimate for the EU was also revised up to 66.8 MMT based on strong crop prospects for Poland, Croatia, France, Romania, Germany, Spain, Slovakia, and Italy. 

With local production projected to be high and corn’s price competitiveness reducing in a number of countries across Europe, Post expects imports to decline to 13.3 MMT. 

Despite the higher yields forecasted in some Member States such as France and Germany, the smaller barley planted area is anticipated to prevent a rebound in production leading to a lowered forecast of  54.5 MMT. 

Barley imports are also projected to fall to 1.3 MMT in MY2021/22 due to the increased competitiveness of other grains used in feed consumption. 

The GAIN report further noted that EU’s domestic grain demand is expected to recover as the region’s economy continues to recover and social interactions, out-of-home consumption, and tourism progressively resume increasingly normal activity patterns.  

Increased demand for grain for industrial usage, as mobility restrictions are eased, is also projected to increase demand for grains across the EU. 

Meanwhile, USDA in a recent report noted that the COVID-19 crisis and the closure of the European hospitality sector during much of the past year cost US beef exporters US$100 million in lost export opportunities. 

According to the report, despite the EU increasing the U.S. specific High Quality Beef quota for 2021, most exporters were not able to fully utilize this opportunity leading to the lost opportunity to earn revenue. 

Business however seems to be recovering with US beef exports to the EU in the last quota year (QY) 2020-21 reaching almost 2,669 MT, up from 2,306 MT recorded in the previous quarter and significantly up from the 1,873 MT imported in the same quarter of the previous year.

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