October 15, 2011


EU's 2011/12 wheat output, stocks to remain stable



EU's wheat output and stocks will change little in contrast to the previous season, according to data unveiled by the EU's executive on Friday (Oct 14).


The data came in a first-ever short-term agricultural outlook published by the EU's executive, following its pledge to provide regular estimates as part of a plan by G20 countries to raise transparency in agricultural markets.


Wheat production in the 27-country bloc was estimated at 127.4 million tonnes compared with 127.5 million tonnes in 2010/11, the data showed.


Ending stocks were forecast at 10.0 million tonnes in 2011/12, almost unchanged from 10.1 million last season.


Within the supply and demand balance, a sharp fall in exports, forecast to fall to 15.0 million from 20.1 million in 2010/11, was partly offset by a rise in animal-feed use within the EU to 53.2 million tonnes from 50.8 million last season.


European wheat exports this season have been curbed by the return of Russia to the world market after the Black Sea producer banned grain shipments in August 2010 in response to a severe drought.


The EU corn crop, which is being harvested at the moment, was estimated at 61.1 million tonnes, up from 57.4 million tonnes last season, the data showed.


Corn imports were seen falling to five million tonnes from 7.5 million last season, with exports unchanged at 1.8 million. Ending stocks on June 30, 2012 were forecast at 11.1 million tonnes, down from 11.8 million.


In oilseeds, the data put rapeseed production this season at 19.0 million tonnes, down from 20.5 million in 2010/11. Imports were projected at three million tonnes, up from 2.6 million in 2010/11, while ending stocks were seen falling to one million tonnes from 1.3 million.


The outlook also forecast meat production, boosted by improved exports in 2010, would to continue its upward trend in 2011 and then decrease slightly in 2012.


Total EU milk production was forecast to reach almost 151 million tonnes in 2011 and stay at a similar level in 2012.


The Commission said the data, based on analysis by experts within the European Commission's agriculture and rural development directorate, would be updated monthly for cereals, with a fuller report issued three times a year.