The EU Commission is forecasting a 6% decline in its total oilseed area for the 2019 harvest, the smallest sown area in seven years, UFOP reported on 26 March.

The total EU oilseed area was 2019 was forecast at 11.5M ha.

“The main reason for the decline is the 10% decrease in rapeseed area to 6.2M ha. Excessively dry conditions at the time of sowing prevented rapeseed sowing in many parts of Europe,” UFOP wrote.

However, the EU Commission said increases in rapeseed yields were expected to offset the decline in area and the projected rapeseed harvest of 19.9M tonnes in 2019 would match that of 2018.

The EU Commission expected sunflower production to fall slightly by 0.7% to reach 10.1M tonnes, which would still exceed the long-term mean by 7%, UFOP wrote.

The soyabean area would remain unchanged at about 1M ha, with a crop estimate of 2.9M tonnes, according to the EU Commission.