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Smallest French Corn Crop Since 1990 Shows Drought’s Huge Toll

  • Ministry expects corn harvest to slump 25% from last year
  • ‘No region is spared from the drop in yield,’ report says
A farmer harvests corn in Courceboeuf, northwestern France in August.

A farmer harvests corn in Courceboeuf, northwestern France in August.

Photographer: Jean-Francois Monier/AFP

French farmers are collecting their smallest corn crop in more than three decades, highlighting the massive toll that summer drought has wrought on Europe’s food supplies. 

Heat and dryness gripped much of the continent throughout summer, in what may be its worst drought in at least 500 years. That’s been particularly brutal for farmers, who are already dipping into winter forage reserves to feed cattle as pastures wither and who face shrinking output of everything from potatoes to sugar.