November 06, 2003



German 2003 Rapeseed Production Seen At 3.64 Million MT


Germany's 2003 preliminary final crop estimate for rapeseed is seen at 3.64 million metric tons, with the preliminary crop estimate for sunflowers at 64,000 MT, according to information from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service web site, Oct. 31 and released Wednesday.


Final results from the German Federal Office of Statistics (StBa) for both crops are expected to be released in spring of 2004.




The official estimate for the 2003 rapeseed crop was revised upwards to 3.641 million MT from 3.355 million MT in August, but is still below the 2002 crop, which amounted to 3.85 million MT. Apparently the effects of the summer drought were less severe than anticipated earlier, the press release said.


Revisions were made to yields, not to acreage. With 28.7 MT/ha, the revised average yield for 2003 is 3.4% lower than the average 2002 yield (29.7 MT/ha) and 14% lower than the five average of 1997-2002, which was 33.4 MT/ha.




The StBa estimates the 2003 sunflower crop at 64,000 MT compared to 51,800 MT in 2002. This is the first official estimate. FAS/Berlin had previously forecast the crop at 50,000 MT, the press release said.


Apparently the effects of the summer drought were less severe than anticipated, as sunflowers benefited from regional rainfalls. In Germany sunflowers are grown on a comparatively small area and production area is geographically spread out over the country.


Compared to 2002, the average yield decreased by 16%. This was more than offset by a 45% increase in area, resulting in a total crop increase of 24%.



Source: USDA