Cold Weather hits UK Farmers

According to the National Farmers' Union the UK is set to become a net importer of wheat for the first time in a decade, due to the impact of the weather on crops. Speaking on Radio 4 NFU President Peter Kendall said that more than two million tons of wheat were lost due to poor weather last year.

This year has not been much kinder to farmers and the rural economy so far. The prolonged winter has been dubbed "springter" by some as low temperatures persist into April. Soil temperatures are still at winter levels and garden centres and nurseries are reporting heavy losses for the Easter period. There have also been heavy losses of livestock due to the recent snow.

The middle of April is the latest that many crops can be sown for optimal harvest, so if the weather does not improve over the next weeks, it could have devastating consequences for farmers.

Last summer the average yield per acre for wheat was 6.7 tonnes, down from 7.8 tonnes a hectare. So far this year, farmers have only got 75% of the planned wheat planted, so the UK is already behind on production.


News Date: 
Sunday, April 7, 2013