ALGIERS, ALGERIA — Inefficient rainfall is anticipated to impact Algeria’s grain crop boosting wheat and barley imports, according to a report from the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Wet weather in the 2021-22 marketing year was below average, decreasing soil moisture leading the USDA to estimate a total of 7.65 million tonnes to be imported despite the country’s efforts to reduce imports and achieve food security.

The Algerian government is working to develop its agriculture industry by encouraging local investment to improve bread wheat and the oilseed sectors.

Drought has impacted Algeria’s high grain producing areas and is expected to reduce the cereal harvest by 30% to 40%, the USDA said, citing a Reuters June 2021 article.

Wheat production for the 2021-22 marketing year is projected to be 3.6 million tonnes with an estimated consumption of 11.1 million tonnes.

Barley demand is mostly based on the feed industry’s need to supplement weather-related pasture conditions. Due to the drought, the USDA forecasts Algeria to import 750,000 tonnes of barley. The country’s production of the commodity is expected to slip 600,000 tonnes to one million tonnes in the 2021-22 marketing year. Barley consumption is anticipated to be 2.05 million tonnes.