MUNICH, GERMANY — For the first time in nearly 30 years, Germany, the second-biggest grain producer in the E.U. behind France, will become a net importer, Reuters reported on Aug. 24.
While grain consumption in Germany is expected to reach up to 44 million tonnes this year, its drought-ravaged grain crop is forecast to produce only 35.6 million tonnes, a 22% drop from a year ago, according to the Deutscher Raiffeisenverband (DRV), a farm cooperative association.
If realized, it would be Germany’s smallest grain crop in 24 years.
The drought has affected most of northern Europe, which is one of the world’s key grain-producing regions.
The DRV told Reuters that significant declines in harvests in Russia and Ukraine also are having a negative impact on grain availability. Australia, another major grain producer, also is suffering through a severe drought.
The DBV is calling for around $1.1 billion in special aid to help German farmers dealing with drought and the highest summer temperatures in decades.
Germany’s winter wheat crop is forecast to fall 23% to 18.6 million tonnes, the DBV said, while the winter barley crop is projected to drop 18% to 7.4 million tonnes.