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The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the European Commission's science and knowledge service which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy.
The November issue of the JRC MARS Bulletin Crop monitoring in Europe was published today, alongside three of the JRC MARS Bulletin global outlook series: on Turkey, Russia and Ukraine.
In addition to the agrometeorological overview, the crop monitoring Bulletin for Europe features an update on the sowing conditions for winter crops and a review of the sugar beet season. Weather conditions for field operations have predominantly been favourable in most of France and the main cropping regions of the United Kingdom, but challenging in several other parts of Europe.
In northern Germany, northern Poland and Lithuania, the abundant rain continued and delayed field operations. Rapeseed is worst affected, as its optimal sowing window has finished and a reduction in the planted area is expected. In contrast, in Spain, Portugal and the Maghreb region, the drought conditions continue: the very scant rainfall in October was insufficient and more rain is needed to allow good germination and emergence before the closing of the optimal sowing window in mid-December.
According to the MARS Bulletin global outlook - Turkey, Sowing conditions have generally been favourable thanks to good soil moisture in the western main agricultural region. An abrupt cold spell in November could have caused damage to young winter barley stands in central Turkey.
Russia experienced a difficult sowing campaign this autumn. Scarce rainfall allowed for the good progress of sowing activities in southern European Russia, but very dry topsoil hampered emergence and early crop development until mid-October. In northern and eastern regions of European Russia, the early phase of the sowing campaign was delayed due to abundant rain in late August and early September. Frequent rainfall in October caused further delays and in several places forced a premature finish to the sowing campaign.
In Ukraine, the 2017-2018 season has started well. Farmers have benefited from favourable wet conditions to complete sowing, and subsequent rains have benefited crop emergence and early establishment.