26 January 1999
World wheat production to fall this year

POOR weather and low prices will cut production of wheat this year, according to the International Grains Council (IGC).

Heavy rains hit many 1998 crops in many countries. UK, Danish, German, Finnish and Romanian farmers are expected to plant less wheat this year as a result.

The USA is scaling back its winter wheat production in the face of low prices. But production in China, Morocco, Pakistan and India is suffering from a lack of rain.

The IGC forecasts 1999 global production at 575 million tonnes, down 8m tonnes from 1998 but still the third highest figure on record.

The Commonwealth of Independent States and the Baltic region are expected to increase wheat production. More wheat is expected to be planted in Turkey where farmers are making a switch from less profitable cotton.