EU Wheat Crop Estimates Trimmed

French analysts Strategie Grains have cut their EU-27 soft wheat production estimate by 600,000 MT to 134.1 MMT, although that still represents a 4.2 MMT or 3.2% increase on lat year.

Barley output is seen by them at 57 MMT, which is 200,000 MT down on last month and 4.8 MMT down on the 61.8 MMT they say was produced last year.

Corn output is seen up 200,000 MT from last month and 900,000 MT higher than last year at 57.9 MMT.

Meanwhile, the association of German farming cooperatives say that the coming season's grain harvest will fall to 46 MMT from 49.9 MMT in 2009. Wheat production will come in at 24.6 MMT, winter barley 8.6 MMT and spring barley 1.8 MMT they say. attribute part of the reason behind the lower wheat production number to German farmers planting more higher quality, but lower yielding, wheats. A trend that seems to be being replicated here in the UK with farmers growing wheat for Ranks and the likes. I'm not sure that this significant volume of lower yielding wheat is being accurately reflected in overall production estimates yet.

The cold and wet conditions witnessed across all of Europe this winter looks like it may also have restricted fieldwork, which could also take the shine of final yields.

"Fields are still frozen following a very cold winter. In Ukraine, a massive snow melt is under way, where soggy fields are apt to delay spring planting. Winter precipitation was twice normal on many of these farms. Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic are also having trouble warming up, after one of the harshest winters in decades," says Gail Martell of Martell Crop Projections: