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EU Sees Rising Food Output by 2023 on Export and Biofuel Demand

European Union production of foodstuffs from cheese to poultry to wheat is predicted to climb by 2023 on demand for exports and the manufacturing of biofuels from grains, the 28-nation bloc said.

Annual grain output is seen climbing to 316.1 million metric tons in 2023 from 304.3 million tons in 2013, while total meat output is seen rising to 45.5 million tons from 43.7 million tons last year, the EU wrote in an online report.

The EU’s grain, meat and dairy industries are all expected to benefit from global demand, according to the report. The EU produces 20 percent of the world’s wheat and pork and accounts for 30 percent of global cheese exports, based on data from the United Nations’ Food & Agriculture Organization.

“Agricultural commodity prices are expected to stay firm over the medium term, supported by factors such as the growth in global food demand, the development of the biofuel sector and a low productivity growth,” the European Commission wrote.

The EU area growing arable crops is expected to remain stable at 57.8 million hectares (142.8 million acres), with an increase for soft wheat, corn and rapeseed at the expense of barley and durum wheat, according to the report. Soft-wheat planting may rise to 24 million hectares by 2023 from 23.3 million hectares last year.

Grain consumption is predicted to climb to 297.9 million tons in a decade from 279.8 million tons in 2013, led by a doubling in use of cereals to make fuel to 20.6 million tons from 10.1 million tons. EU grain exports are seen climbing to 31.1 million tons from 27.4 million tons.


Farmers in the EU are projected to harvest 137.9 million tons of soft wheat in 2023 from 136 million tons last year, with exports rising to 19.9 million tons from 18 million tons.

EU corn output may jump to 79.3 million tons from 64.5 million tons in 2013, according to the prospect report. The bloc sees the rapeseed crop climbing to 23.4 million tons in 2023 from 20.5 million tons.

“Maize production, in particular, will continue to grow due to the use of maize as a feedstock for the ethanol industry,” the bloc wrote, using another name for corn.

Ethanol production may climb to 6.1 million tons from 3.4 million tons, while output of biodiesel is projected to rise to 12.2 million tons from 7.9 million tons.

EU beef production is predicted to slip to 7.62 million tons from 7.72 million tons a decade earlier, while pork output is seen rising to 23.4 million tons from 22.3 million tons and poultry production to 13.6 million tons from 12.8 million tons.

The bloc’s exports of pork may reach 2.29 million tons in 2023 up from 2.11 million tons last year, and outgoing shipments of poultry may increase to 1.45 million tons from 1.34 million tons, based on the projections.


“Russia and China are expected to remain the main destinations for EU pig-meat exports with a projected increase of the Chinese import demand,” the EU wrote. For poultry, “dynamic import demand in the Middle East, especially Saudi Arabia, and China is expected to continue and should boost EU exports,” it said.

Cow-milk output may rise to 157.3 million tons from 150.4 million tons, with most of the increase absorbed by cheese production, the European Commission said. Cheese making may climb to 10.7 million tons from 9.67 million tons, with exports advancing to 1.02 million tons from 806,000 tons in 2013.

“It is expected that the cheese market will be buoyed by a dynamic world market and steady growth in domestic demand,” the EU wrote.

The FAO’s index of dairy prices averaged 242.9 points last year, the highest ever and up from 95.6 points in 2003.

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