If most of the crops can be harvested in dry weather, we can still reach a reasonable grain harvest of about 3.6 billion kilos. This would make the grain harvest a couple of percent smaller than last year. Other crops, such as rape, peas and broad beans, are expected to yield a greater harvest than last year.
– The grain harvest will probably be the smallest in five years, says Anneli Partala, researcher at Natural Resources Institute Finland on the basis of the crop estimate.
The crop estimates of all agricultural products are a compilation of varying conditions around Finland:
– The hot and dry early summer, individual nights of frost and heavy rainfall after mid-June have seriously affected growth in Alavus, in Ostrobothnia, says ProAgria’s plant production expert Jussi Hannonen.
What the actual crop figures will be will depend on the weather conditions during harvesting.
Bigger oats harvest – other grains in decline
The oats harvest is expected to be ten per cent bigger than last year, totaling some 1.1 billion kilos. Yet this is not a particularly high figure, because last year’s harvest was the lowest in five years. The barley harvest will be the same as last year, at 1.5 billion kilos. The wheat harvest will be about 15 per cent lower, being less than 900 million kilos.
Last year’s rye harvest (107 million kilos) was the highest in 15 years. This year’s harvest will fall below domestic consumption. The harvest outlook for rye is 87 million kilos, which will not cover the domestic consumption of about 100 million kilos.
Record crops of peas and broad beans possible
Pea and broad bean farmland doubled last year. This year the same amount of land is under cultivation, and the crop expectations are high. Both are expected to clock up double-digit harvest growth percentages. This also applies to oilseed rape, owing to its area under cultivation being twice as big as last year.
The crop expectations of potato are moderate, slightly higher than last year. The sugar beet harvest, on the other hand, is expected at this stage to be 15 per cent higher than last year. However, the growth season of potato and sugar beet is still in progress, so the estimates are very rough at this stage.
Positive prospects for the harvests of silage and hay
Herbaceous plants have primarily benefited from the rains, and dryness has not hampered their growth to any significant extent. However, if rains delay the harvest of forage, its quality may be compromised. The same qualitative risk exists for all agricultural products waiting to be harvested.
Background to the statistics
The harvest estimate of Luke’s crop production statistics is based on local estimates supplied by experts at ProAgria Rural Advisory Centres and reflects the situation as on 22 August. The estimates for each municipality are based on visual observations and local knowledge. The areas under cultivation are obtained from the data system of the administrative body of rural industries on 22 August 2016.
More precise harvest data will be reported on 24 November, when the harvest data supplied by farms will become available for the calculation of harvest volumes.