German Harvest Latest

The German Farmers' Union Deutscher Bauernverband (DBV) say that wheat yields are likely to be 10-20% down on last year, although harvesting of this season's 3.25 million hectares has only just begun.

The 2010 harvest is marked by extreme weather events, they say. The long snowy winter and the continued wet and cold weather in April, delayed crops. Since mid-June, high temperatures and prolonged drought have now accelerated the harvest and led to premature ripening of wheat, barley and rapeseed, they say.

The winter barley harvest on the sandy soils in the eastern areas of Lower Saxony is already almost complete, whilst On the heavy soils in the northern parts of Germany it is in full swing, they add.

Nationwide barley yields vary quite widely with some regions seeing falls of 10% on last season, yet others such as Bavaria witnessing an improvement of 10% on last season. Overall they expect barley yields to be around 3% lower, they say. Quality is coming out "surprisingly well" especially in eastern areas, they add.

The rapeseed harvest is underway, but it is too early to make an accurate prediction on yield and oil content levels, although early results confirm that the recent heat must lower yields from last season's bumper levels, they conclude.