The 2020 harvest level of barley, the main cereal in the cereal harvest, fell one fifth behind the average level, as did the harvest levels of wheat and rye. Instead, the oat harvest exceeded the ten-year average by one tenth.
“The cereal harvest of nearly 3.3 million tons is sufficient to cover the annual domestic consumption of approximately 2.8 million tons. Although this volume is sufficient, it does not fully meet our demands for consumption. In addition, one third of our oat harvest, or roughly 300 million kilos, has mainly ended up on European dinner tables”, says Anneli Partala, senior statistician at the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke).
Rye harvest fell – corresponding to a little more than six months of consumption
The rye harvest of roughly 66,000 tons is estimated to be sufficient for consumption of seven to eight months in Finland. During poor harvest years, rye has been imported into Finland. This year, however, there is still rye in stock after the high harvest year of 2019, reducing the pressure to import rye.
Pea harvest increasing, oil crops needing a boost
Pea cultivation has been resurrected. This year’s pea harvest is the highest in the 100-year history of the statistics, and markets are showing green light for peas. The future of peas and broad beans as a domestic source of feed proteins is looking promising, and their use as food is also increasing.
Instead, turnip rape and rapeseed cultivation has decreased due to low harvest levels. The 2020 turnip rape and rapeseed harvest is the lowest in the history of the statistics since the 1970s. Turnip rape was added to the statistics in the 1950s when the cultivation of oil crops was being started.
Organic harvest levels increasing driven by growing field areas
The organic field area already exceeded the mark of one tenth of the total field area a few years ago. Even though the organic area is still characterised by large grasslands, the total organic cultivation area is increasing. The organic oat harvest increased by 5% from the previous year to approximately 80,000 tons, accounting for 7% of Finland’s total oat harvest. In Finland, organic oats have both been imported and exported in recent years.
Background to the statistics
Luke collects crop production information from approximately 6,200 farms, of which 700 are organic farms, using telephone interviews and an online survey. The preliminary statistics include information from approximately 4,400 farms. The statistics will be reported as final in March 2021, when the confirmed data supplied by farms included in the statistics become available for the calculation of harvest volumes. Information about the quality of the cereal harvest has been compiled by combining the crop production information collected by Luke and the Finnish Food Authority’s cereal quality monitoring information.
All information is available in the stat.luke.fi service. The service includes crop production information about key crops in all parts of Finland starting from 1920. Regional crop production information is available in the service starting from 1999.