Welsh harvest suffered from lack of rain

“We’ve not had a spit of rain since June. It’s good for harvest, but not for anything else,” NFU deputy president Meurig Raymond, who farms in Haverfordwest, Wales, said.

He was two-thirds of the way through harvest, with 240ha of crops left to cut.

Yields of 220ha Cocktail spring barley were down from last year’s 7t/ha (2.8t/ac) to 6.5t/ha (2.6t/ac), purely due to the dry weather, he said. Bushel weights were reasonably good.

“We’re 40% of the way through spring barley and what has been cut is at malting standard, but it has suffered from the lack of rain.”

Mr Raymond was 50% through cutting Robigus and Claire winter wheat. He said wheat on lighter land was struggling to reach 8.75t/ha (3.5t/ac) and crops on the heavier land were coming off at just over 10t/ha (4t/ac) which was 1.25t/ha (0.5t/ac) down on last year.

The crop was all feed wheat and bushel weights were good, but the crops all suffered from the drought. “We wouldn’t normally say we have light land but this year it definitely [performed like] light land.”

All crops had suffered from the dry weather and he was disappointed with the oilseed rape and winter barley which were also below the five-year average.

He added: “We should be wrapped up in a week but torrential rain is forecast so we may grind to a halt.”

• Crop: Spring barley
• Variety: Cocktail
• Area: 220ha
• Yield: 6.5t/ha

• Crop: Winter wheat
• Variety: Robigus and Claire
• Area: N/A
• Yield: 8.75t/ha-10t/ha

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