According to a Global Agricultural Information Network report from the US Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), European Union grain production in marketing year 2023-24 is expected to rise to 285 million tonnes from 267 million tonnes in 2022-23 due to drought conditions.
“Favorable initial crop development conditions are reported across the EU, although spring rains in the EU’s southwest will be critical to replenish soil moisture and allow yields to bounce back to average levels,” FAS Post Madrid wrote.
All winter cereals are expected to outplant last season. After the 2022 drought and fertilizer price spike, EU farmers are interested in drought-resistant, low-input crops.
The crop structure is predicted to favor drought-tolerant wheat and barley over corn.
Wheat (137.8 million tonnes), corn (64.4 million), barley (53 million), rye (7.75 million), oats (7.5 million), rice (1.4 million), and sorghum (656,000) will help meet 263.21 million tonnes of EU consumption.
Animal feed consumes 60% of EU grain. Corn, wheat, and barley will make up 85% of the EU’s 158.8 million tonnes of animal feed in 2023-24.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and rising food prices have stressed the EU grain balance and stalled grain consumption.
The increased production is expected to cut imports to 27.44 million tonnes in 2023-24 from 35.59 million and increase grain exports to 47.44 million tonnes from 42.29 million.