Source: EU Commission/AMI
Source: EU Commission/AMI

The European Union (EU)’s top rapeseed producers are still France and Germany, according to a report by Germany’s Union for the Promotion of Oil and Protein Plants (UFOP).

France and Germany were both expected to harvest more rapeseed in 2023 compared to the previous year, the 4 May report said.

“Due to the mild temperatures and higher-than-average precipitation amounts, rapeseed crops on German fields look very good,” UFOP said.

According to the latest data available at the time of the report, the EU Commission expected this year’s German rapeseed harvest to total 4.5M tonnes, which would be a rise of 232,000 tonnes compared to 2022.

However, heavy rainfall in some areas had left land inaccessible, leading to delayed harvesting, the report said.

At just less than 4.6M tonnes, a bigger rapeseed harvest was also expected in France, meaning the country would retain its position as the leading EU rapeseed producer.

Larger rapeseed harvests were also expected in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Lithuania compared to 2023, although the biggest production increase was forecast in Romania.

According to information published by the EU Commission, Romania’s rapeseed harvest is set to grow to around 1.6M tonnes this year. This would be an increase of 33% compared to the drought year 2022 and the largest total in six years.

Poland, the EU’s third most important rapeseed producer, was expected to see its rapeseed harvest decline by 8% compared to the previous year to 3.4M tonnes.

According to research by Agrarmarkt Informations-Gesellschaft, a smaller rapeseed harvest was also expected in Denmark.

“The projected drop in rapeseed production in Poland and Denmark can be more than offset by the expected increases in France, Germany and Romania. More specifically, the Commission has forecast a EU rapeseed crop of 20M tonnes, which… would not only be 464,000 tonnes higher than in 2022, but also the second largest output ever. It is only topped by the 2014 harvest of 21.8M tonnes,” UFOP said.