This year’s grain harvest is expected to be average at 3.6 million tons after two years of poor yield. The expected rye harvest is abundant at 140,000 tons; more than triple the amount of the 2018 harvest.
The weather at the start of the growing season has been favourable for the growth of field crops. However, drought in Southern Finland has limited plant growth in places. Southern Karelia and the west coast, meanwhile, have suffered from the cool weather.
“The current harvest outlook is promising for nearly all plants across Finland. Only turnip rape and oilseed rape expectations are lowered by pest damage,” says Senior Statistician Anneli Partala of the Natural Resources Institute Finland.
Above average harvests can be expected particularly from rye and pea. Harvest is still a couple of months away, however, and weather, pests, and plant diseases during the rest of the growing season may affect final yields, and they will in particular be determined by conditions at the time of harvest.
Abundant rye yields to guarantee Finnish rye bread
Last year’s rye harvest covered only 40 per cent of the domestic demand for rye. At current estimates, this year’s harvest will yield more rye than last autumn, more than covering domestic demand for the next year. The estimated 140,000 tons yield would be the largest in nearly 30 years and would interrupt the need to import rye for over a year.
Biggest oats harvest in six years
Oat is an important export grain for Finland, with buyers across the world. The estimated harvest yield of nearly 1.1 million tons is more than enough to satisfy the growing oat hunger of domestic industry, which is currently at about 300,000 tons. The use of oats as feed grain on farms slightly surpasses the use in industry.
Of the feed grains, though, barley is the most important. Its estimated harvest, 1.5 million tons, is about 10 per cent below average, but still over 10 per cent greater than last year.
Turnip rape and oilseed rape going downhill
The harvests for turnip rape and oilseed rape are set to be the smallest since the 1970s. The expected total yield of 41,000 tons is 42 per cent smaller than last year. The area sown was significantly smaller than last year for both plants, and the yield per hectare is also estimated to be even smaller than last year’s poor yield.
Background to the statistics
Luke’s July harvest estimates are based on local estimates supplied by experts at ProAgria Rural Advisory Centres and reflect the situation on 15 July. The estimates for each municipality are based on visual observations and local knowledge. The areas under cultivation are obtained from the Finnish Food Authority’s administrative data systems.
The next statistics, reflecting the situation on 26 August, will be published on 30 August 2019. The crop production statistics will be expanded and further specified on 22 November, at which time Luke will publish regional harvest information based on information obtained directly from farms.