Heat, drought in Germany lead to below-average harvests

German farmers recorded a below-average grain harvest this year of 45 million tons due to heat and drought in parts of the country.

Omitting data from 2018 – a drought year – the harvest was about six per cent lower than the average of the crops from 2013 to 2017, the German Farmers’ Association said on Friday on Facebook.

“Overall, we see that the weather extremes are increasing,” Association President, Joachim Rukwied, said, noting that some regions had sufficient rainfall, while others recorded temperatures as high as 40 degrees in June and July.

“This,of course, puts pressure on yields,’’ he added.

Low rainfall and high temperatures in 2018 led many German farmers to record their worst harvest, with Agriculture Minister, Julia Kloeckner, saying the “national scale” of the drought inflicted damage that required federal assistance.

Farmers with financial problems have so far received around 228 million euros (252 million dollars) in state aid.

Payouts are possible until Aug. 31 of this year.

Germany’s federal and state governments had promised aid of up to 170 million euros each.

Germany’s Agriculture Ministry will present its harvest report on Aug. 29.

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