EU: Central European countries running a risk of short supply of malting barley this year - analysts
The 2020 spring barley acreage in France and the U.K. was abnormally large, because incessant rains in autumn of 2019 had prevented drilling of winter grains. Irrespective of such abnormal situation, the spring malting barley production has been shrinking for years, H. M. Gauger GmbH reported earlier in April.
Farmers have been unhappy with the risks and prices of malting barley, and this year wheat, maize and feed barley are the most interesting alternatives.
The Central European region of Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and Croatia is running a real risk of a short supply of malting barley in 2021; since years the industries of this region have been using much winter barley to remain independent of expensive French or Danish supplies.
Poland is another market short of quality barley. Should the Polish maltsters be unable to secure supplies from Central Europe or Lithuania, they must import barley from Scandinavia or the U.K.
At the moment English barley is uncompetitive vs. Danish offers. U.K. maltsters pay better prices than export markets, and farmers have been most reluctant sellers.
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