Bloomberg News

U.K. Lowers Wheat Harvest Estimate 0.4% After Excess Rain

December 20, 2012

The U.K.’s wheat crop estimate was lowered 0.4 percent from the October forecast after months of excess rain.

Farmers harvested 13.26 million metric tons of the grain, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs in London said on its website today. The October estimate was 13.31 million tons. Last season, the country produced 15.257 million tons of wheat. Yields averaged 6.7 tons a hectare (2.47 acres), down 14 percent, according to the report. Wheat was grown on 1.992 million hectares, compared with 1.969 million hectares a year earlier.

June to August was the wettest in 100 years in the U.K., according to the Met Office, the national weather forecaster. Excess rain has cut wheat grain weights to the lowest since 1977, reducing the amount of flour millers can extract from every kernel, the Agriculture & Horticulture Development Board has said. The U.K. is the European Union’s third-largest wheat grower.

Feed-wheat prices are up 37 percent this year on NYSE Liffe in London. Futures for May delivery reached an all-time high at 230 pounds ($) a ton on Nov. 28.

Rapeseed production fell 7.3 percent to 2.557 million tons, Defra said. The agency forecast output at 2.564 million tons in October. The barley harvest was pegged at 5.522 million tons, up 0.5 percent from last year and down from the October forecast at 5.527 million tons.

To contact the reporters on this story: Claudia Carpenter in London at ccarpenter2@abloomberg.net; Whitney McFerron in London at wmcferron1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net


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