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Copa-Cogeca releases new EU-28 cereals estimates for 2014/15 marketing year

Copa-Cogeca released new EU-28 cereals estimates for the 2014/15 marketing year today,showing good winter sowings, though the growing season is still in its early stages.
The move came at Copa-Cogecas Cereal Working Party. At the meeting, many Member States reported a positive crop situation due to the mild winter this year and good winter sowings. Despite uncertainty about the planting season for maize, the overall area should be stable with EU grain production estimated to rise by 1.5% compared to last year, and a slight improvement seen for wheat area sowings. The UK situation was also positive, despite the severe floods. But in some countries like Spain it was too early to say and figures are still cautious for the EU. There were also concerns that durum wheat plantings are down despite good climatic conditions in these regions. Baltic states are meanwhile facing a huge rate of winter kill (around 80%) and are looking for available spring seed varieties. In order to prevent the situation of stidy seed availability in the future, Chairman of the working party Max Schulman from Finland said a balance sheet on seeds for cereals, oilseeds and pulses needs to be set up.
He welcomed the overall positive crop situation. But he underlined that although the potential is there it is still too early in the season to be certain. Conditions are also now dry in some parts and more water is needed and frost kill still may appear in Nordic area. There is still also uncertainty if cereal producers will have sufficient cash flow to cover the increasing costs, such as fertilizer and plant protection products. This poor economical situation is putting pressure for growers to exploit the full potential of their production, he warned.
According to Copa-Cogecas provisional estimates, EU-28 soft wheat production is estimated to climb by 2.7% to 136.199 million tonnes this year, barley production to drop slightly by 0.4% . See website for details.

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