EU’s crop yield projected to fall
The production of wheat and other grains in the European Union is expected to fall this year due to dry weather, agriculture consulting firm Strategie Grains warned in its latest report, published on Thursday.
The study showed that the EU’s wheat crop is expected to be 123.3 million tons, down from the 124.4 million projected in June and below the 129.9 million tons harvested last year.
The barley harvest is 49.6 million tons, compared to the 50.3 million predicted last month and 51.9 million in 2021. The corn harvest is projected to fall to 65.4 million tons, down from 66.8 million tons last month and 69.7 million last year.
The research company lowered its wheat and barley crop estimates last month, citing overly dry conditions during the first half of the growing season in many countries.
“Recurrent water shortages and hot weather in many production zones are adversely impacting yield potentials,” Strategie Grains stated.
The grim forecast comes at a time when the grain crisis is being felt across the globe as wheat prices have surged to record highs over the past two months. The global food market, already affected by weather and the Covid pandemic, was dealt another blow due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict and Western sanctions on Moscow. Together, Russia and Ukraine export more than a quarter of the world’s wheat. Russia is also the world’s largest exporter of fertilizers.
This has sparked fears of global food insecurity and hunger. The executive director for the UN’s World Food Program, David Beasley, has said that 49 million people in 43 countries are already “knocking on famine’s door.”
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