Quality remains good in rest of Europe’s harvest

Rainfall and increased quality concerns remain the dominant feature of the 2008 European harvest, although quality so far appear reasonable. Overall, the crop is expected to be well above last year.

Concern remains for UK crop quality, particularly if we have a significant exportable surplus to compete against increased supplies from EU and third country competitors.

ADAS reports only 14% of UK wheat had been cut by 19 August (54% a year ago), with protein 10-12.5% and Hagbergs around the 250s. Worries remain over Hagberg losses for the wheat still to be cut. Winter barley is 97% complete and spring barley is about 30% cut, with yields of 6.65 t/ha and nitrogen levels 1.4-1.7%. The rapeseed harvest is 93% complete, and yields are about 3.2t/ha.

With the wheat harvest nearing completion, the rains which delayed the French harvest do not seem to have significantly affected crop quality. Specific weights are up to 74kg/hl in late-harvested regions and 78-80 kg/hl in the south. Hagbergs are good, and proteins, although lower than last year, are between 11 and 12%. The rapeseed harvest is now complete, and the average yield is better than expected, 13% above last year. Production is now estimated at about 4.8m tonnes.

In Germany, up to 20% wheat remains to be cut in some regions. Early quality results are good Hagbergs are around the 295s and protein content over 13%. The German farmers union now estimates the grain crop at about 47m tonnes (17% up to 24m tonnes for wheat, 9% up to 9m tonnes for winter barley and 5% down to 5m tonnes rapeseed).

Russia has harvested more than 85% of its total 75.3m tonne grain crop, about 22m tonnes above last year. Some 43.2m tonnes wheat and 17m tonnes barley have been cut. As of August 15, 10% of the Kazakh crop had been harvested. Total grain production is about 17m tonnes, and the export potential could reach about 5.5m tonnes of grain.

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