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News article21 March 2022Joint Research Centre2 min read

Fair start to spring for most European crops

Sunny and dry spring weather, tractor with high wheels is making fertilizer on young wheat.
Sunny and dry spring weather allowed farmers in northern regions to make good progress with field operations, but has become a concern in several parts of southern Europe.
© Adobe Stock, by Algimantas

According to the March issue of the JRC MARS Bulletin - Crop monitoring in Europe, published today, winter crops entered spring in fair to good condition in most parts of Europe following a predominantly mild winter.

Weather and terrain conditions allowed for a good start to field operations.

Areas of concern - extreme weather events
European Union, 2022


Dry spell remains a concern in southern Europe

Drought conditions continued in large parts of south-western Europe.

Winter cereals in southern parts of the Iberian Peninsula have been negatively impacted by drought, and present suboptimal growth.

In southern France and north-western Italy, crop development is still in the very early stages and winter crops are not yet or only slightly impacted.

Dry conditions are also unfavourable for the sowing of summer crops, while the low levels of water reservoirs (i.e. snowpacks, and inland water bodies) are causing concern about water availability for irrigation in late spring and summer.

To avoid reduction in yield potential, rain is also needed in most of the rest of Italy, as well as in Slovenia, Croatia, Hungary, Romania and south-western Ukraine.

Continued drought conditions in the Maghreb region has severely impacted yield potential, and even caused crop failure in parts of Morocco.

Mixed effects of cold and wet conditions

Cold and wet conditions along the Italian Adriatic coast, Greece and Turkey delayed crop development, but favourably replenished soil moisture.

The precipitation surplus in European Russia is also considered favourable for crops.

Crop yield forecasts based mainly on historical trends

As it is still early in the season, the crop yield forecasts reported in this issue of the Bulletin are - with a few exceptions - based on historical trends.

MARS crop yield table
European Union, 2022

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Further information

JRC MARS (Monitoring Agricultural Resources) Bulletins


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Publication date
21 March 2022
Joint Research Centre