COCERAL’s released their final 2018 oat production estimates today. Total EU-28 oat production is pegged at 7.883 MMT, down 4.4% from their Sept estimate, but is down less than 1% from last year and is on par with the average.
The extreme drought conditions this year did, however, have a huge impact on production in the top two EU oat exporters, Finland and Sweden, where production dropped a combined 29.2% from last year said the COCERAL estimates.
Production in the top five EU oat exporters, which includes the Scan countries, Poland, France, and Denmark, is estimated down 13% this year and 8% below the average.
COCERALs 2018 estimate in the UK of 0.920 MMT is however in contrast with the lower DEFRA estimate released last week of 0.857 MMT. We believe Poland and Denmark production estimates are also too high based on Gov’t estimates in the two countries. This would suggest the COCERAL top five-exporter production estimate is too high.
The bottom line is, EU/UK oat millers will continue to have challenges sourcing oats deep into the 2018/19 crop year. This is likely to keep oat prices in major exporters firm at least into spring seeding.
Oat millers are from reports “making do” with quantities of oats from non-traditional sources, including Spain, where production climbed 57% this year.