Bloomberg News

French Soft Wheat Rated as Good or Excellent Gains to 65%

May 03, 2012

French soft wheat rated as “good” or “excellent” increased to 65 percent in the latest week from 63 percent a week earlier, crop office FranceAgriMer said.

The soft wheat rated “good” advanced to 52 percent of the crop in the seven days ended April 30 from 51 percent a week earlier, while 13 percent was rated “excellent” from 12 percent the previous week, Montreuil-sous-Bois, France-based FranceAgriMer wrote on its website.

Soil-water reserves in France, the European Union’s largest wheat grower, improved in April as more rain fell than usual, the Agriculture Ministry said. Crops benefited from rain that relieved drought stress for some winter grains, crop researcher Arvalis Institut du Vegetal said last week.

The ratings are the average for eight regions representing 54 percent of French soft-wheat production, according to the crop office. France accounted for 5.9 percent of the world wheat crop last year, based on International Grains Council data.

In the Alsace region, where fields were damaged by extreme cold in February, the crop rated “good” or excellent’’ advanced to 44 percent from 40 percent, while in Lorraine 33 percent of wheat fell into those categories, from 29 percent the previous week. In Centre, the country’s main wheat-growing area, 64 percent of soft wheat matched the two top ratings, from 61 percent.

France’s durum wheat rated “good” or “excellent” increased to 49 percent of the crop from 46 percent the previous week, FranceAgriMer wrote.

Durum Wheat

Durum wheat rated “excellent” was unchanged at 5 percent, while the crop rated “good” climbed to 44 percent from 41 percent, based on three regions making up 58 percent of French production of the grain.

Winter barley rated “good” and “excellent” remained at 48 percent and 10 percent of the crop, respectively, based on conditions in seven regions that represent 56 percent of the average national output.

For spring barley, the “excellent” rating rose to 19 percent of the grain from 18 percent a week earlier, while grain rated “good” fell 1 percentage point to 60 percent. The ratings are based on data from five regions that on average grow 47 percent of the French crop, according to FranceAgriMer.

Spring barley in the Lorraine region continued to improve, with the portion rated “excellent” climbing to 24 percent, from 19 percent last week and 7 percent two weeks ago, according to FranceAgriMer.

To contact the reporter on this story: Rudy Ruitenberg in Paris at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at

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