A new report by the European Commission (EC) forecasts a rise in grain and oilseed production and exports this year, World Grain wrote.

“Proposed measures to increase the European Union’s (EU) arable crops production will allow farmers to increase their sowing area for (corn), sunflowers and protein crops,” the EC said. “As a result, the 2022 EU harvest may be a very good one for cereals and for oilseeds, provided normal weather conditions prevail.”

EU grain production is projected to reach 297.7M tonnes for the 2022 harvest, according to the EC’s 5 April report. The increase, when combined with reduced demand for pork production and lower usage of grain for biofuel production, could help to lessen the impact of a drop in grain exports from Ukraine, the EC said.

Grain exports are expected to increase by 14% this marketing year (until the end of June), according to the report, driven mainly by an additional 5.6M tonnes of soft wheat compared to the previous season.

“This may increase further after the 2022 summer harvest, with net exports of EU cereals potentially increasing by almost 40% to 41.4M tonnes from July 2022 to June 2023 (the 2022/23 marketing year),” the EC said.

Oilseed prices had risen sharply following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on 24 February, with rapeseed and sunflower seed prices reaching €1,000/tonne (US$1,083), the EC added.

EU oilseed production was not a concern, the EC said, as it was estimated to grow by 6.5% to 30.2M tonnes this marketing year and was projected to increase to 32.2M tonnes in 2022/23, with the latter including 11.2M tonnes of sunflower seeds.