Crop losses of up to 25 per cent due to drought – New Commission measures

The Joint Research Centre (JRC) forecasts high losses for sunflowers and grain maize caused by the drought. The Commission will formally adopt new measures designed to help farmers across Europe deal with the damages.

Regular quantitative forecasts are produced by the JRC in support of the CAP, covering the main crops, such as wheat, grain maize, rape seed, sunflower sugar beet and potato. The latest analysis shows an expected drop in the main crop yields ranging from 2 per cent for potato to 25 per cent for sunflower at EU level. The loss in wheat production will be approximately 10 million tons compared to last year. Both quantity and quality of the harvest will be diminished, with central and southern Europe being the most affected areas.

In its meeting on 27 August, the Commission will formally adopt three new measures to support farmers affected by the drought. These include the advanced payment of 50 per cent of direct support for arable crops on 16 October instead of 16 November as is normally the case. Moreover, some quantities of rye, barley and sorghum will be offered for sale by tender from intervention stocks to be used in animal feed. As a third measure, the advances for suckler cow and special beef premiums will be brought forward from 16 October to the beginning of September in the most affected areas.

Further measures to be discussed could include a further selling of cereals from intervention on the internal market; amendment of national rural development programmes or creation of new measures for the restoration of damaged agricultural production; compensation for losses suffered through state aid.


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