The pronounced dry spell that hit Western Europe has come to an end
Towards the end of May a general change of weather constellation for Western Europe took place. The persistent high-pressure system which led to an extremely dry spring was replaced by a general westerly current, bringing in a string of low-pressure systems to Western Europe with a mix of rain and sunshine. Countries that had been hit by dry conditions have now received beneficial rainfall, thus ending the dry spell.
Total wheat production in EU27 is forecast at 134.2 mio t, which is 1.9 % less than production in 2010, due to a reduction for both soft (-1.5 %) and durum wheat (-7.5 %). The acreage for both cereals is lower than last year, -0.5 % and -8.6 % respectively. The forecast production for barley (53.3 mio t) is comparable to 2010, the loss for winter barley (-9.4 %) being offset by the increase in spring barley (+9.3 %). Grain maize is estimated at 60.7 mio t, which represents an increase of 4.6 % over 2010 and +7.5 % compared to the last 5-year average.
Weather conditions were unfavourable in the main rapeseed production countries; the yield forecast ranges from -16.5 % in Germany to -5.3 % in the UK, compared to last year. Production is estimated at 19.1 mio t, which is 6.6 % less than last year.