* Mild winter cuts need to re-sow with barley
* 2014 harvest starting, enough to meet needs
HAMBURG, June 25 The European Union's harvest of
barley, used for animal feed and malt output, is likely to fall
this year but supplies will be adequate to meet the bloc's
needs, analysts said on Wednesday.
German analyst FO Licht forecasts the EU barley harvest of
all types will fall to around 53 million tonnes from 59.6
million last year. EU grain trade association Coceral estimates
the 2014 crop at 55.9 million tonnes.
"The harvest will be the smallest in three years but will be
sufficient to meet estimated EU demand in the new year of about
50 million tonnes," said F.O. Licht grains analyst Claus Keller.
"The crop reduction is largely due to the mild winter which
meant that frost-damaged wheat did not have to be replanted."
Observers expect smaller crops in Britain, Spain and
Scandinavia, but larger crops in parts of west Europe.
In the EU's largest barley producer France, winter barley
harvesting started last week and early results show good yields
and quality, brokers said.
Recent warm, dry weather helped crops to mature and allowed
harvesting to move rapidly northwards, with field work now
started in the Marne valley east of Paris.
In the southwest, where harvesting usually starts earlier
than in other regions, 20 to 30 percent of the winter barley
area had been cut, brokers said.
"Yields have met expectations and are in line with last
year's level," one broker said.
Winter barley is the main variety grown in France and is
mostly consumed in animal feed, while later-sown spring barley
provides more crop for making the beer ingredient malt.
France's farm ministry forecasts a 2014 winter barley crop
of 7.9 million tonnes, up 8 percent from 2013.
In the second largest producer Germany, harvesters started
rolling this week in early areas and more widespread harvesting
is expected to start at the weekend.
Germany's harvest of all barley types is likely to rise 2.3
percent on the year to 10.5 million tonnes, the farm cooperative
"Overall things are looking good, the results from the first
cuts in Germany are positive but are usually not representative
and will may get a better picture next week," one German analyst
said. "I am optimistic we will get good quality."
British crop consultants ADAS expect the UK's 2014 barley
crop to revert to normal production patterns at around 5.9
million tonnes, but sharply down from 7.1 million tonnes the
previous year, when adverse weather forced farmers to plant more
spring barley in place of winter crops.
Winter barley area was increased around 27 percent on the
year to 394,000 hectares, while spring barley area has fallen by
around 29 percent to 640,000 hectares, ADAS said.
"Crops are looking quite well, we had a mild winter which
encouraged continued growth and a mild spring which allowed them
to develop," said ADAS analyst Susan Twining. "We would be
expecting at least average yields and harvest should start in
the first week of July."
Poland's barley crop will rise to 3.48 million tonnes, up 15
percent from last year's especially small crop, said Wojtek
Sabaranski of analysts Sparks Polska.
"Barley fields are in a good to very good condition,"
Sabaranski said. "If weather remains favourable, in the southern
regions of the country spring barley harvesting could start in
(Reporting by Michael Hogan, Valerie Parent, Gus Trompiz and
Sarah McFarlane, editing by William Hardy)