WARSAW, POLAND — After a year in which grain production declined due to a drought in key growing areas, Poland is forecasting a 16% increase in output in 2019-20.

Poland’s Institute of Agricultural and Food Economics (IAFE) forecasts grains production at 31 million tonnes, up from 26.6 million tonnes the previous year.

IAFE’s area planted estimate remains almost in line with last year, although yields are estimated to increase significantly due to better weather conditions.

Corn production is forecast to increase by 18% to 4.5 million tonnes in 2019-20, up from 3.8 million tonnes.

Corn production has a short history in Poland, although it has been steadily increasing since 2007, as planted area has more than doubled since then.

“The main corn drivers have been Poland’s fast-growing poultry industry, and increasing export demand,” according to a Global Agricultural Information Network report from the USDA.

“From 2009 to 2014, Poland’s corn area increased by 250%,” the USDA said. “Corn production is also expanding into new areas, notably eastern Poland, where previously corn was not a viable crop. More advanced inputs and better access to hybrids are raising interest among farmers in raising corn.”

Poland’s wheat output in 2019-20 is forecast to rise 13% to 11 million tonnes, according to the IAFE. Wheat exports are expected to increase in 2019-20, while domestic consumption for livestock and milling should remain unchanged from last year.