EU facing low rapeseed harvest

HAMBURG, Germany (Reuters) — This year’s European Union rape-seed crop is likely to stay around the low level of 2015.

Stable harvests are expected in France and Germany but uncertainty remains about crops in Poland and Britain, experts said on Jan. 28.

The EU could harvest 22 million tonnes of rapeseed this year, compared to 22.1 million last year, said Thomas Mielke, chief executive officer of Hamburg-based oilseed analyst Oil World in preliminary estimates.

This would be much lower than the 24.3 million tonne 2014 crop and would keep EU import demand high for rapeseed, Europe’s main oilseed for vegetable oils, biodiesel and animal feed.

France and Germany would be the two largest producers this year, each harvesting around 5.2 million tonnes, Oil World estimates. France produced 5.27 million tonnes last year and Germany 5.03 million.

Poland would follow with 2.9 million tonnes, compared to three million tonnes last year, and the United Kingdom with 2.1 million tonnes, down from 2.54 million tonnes in 2015.

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