WASHINGTON — Winter wheat crops in Europe could take as long as four years to produce, as farmers in Germany, Denmark and other countries have yet to be told the harvest will be too late.
“If you want to be a successful farmer in Europe, you have to be able to predict when the wheat harvest will arrive,” said Hans-Georg Maassen, a wheat expert at the German government’s Agricultural and Horticultural Research Institute.
“We need to know the date of the harvest and the time of harvest, because this is critical to the farmers.
They have to know when they have to start producing and when they won’t.”
European farmers have been working to prepare for the harvest, but it has not yet been decided whether or not it will be a slow or sudden one.
In Germany, the wheat industry has been slow to adapt to the climate changes caused by climate change, said Maassnert.
That has led to a spike in wheat prices.
Germany is among the worst-hit by climate-related weather, and wheat prices are expected to increase by about 40 percent this year.
Some farmers have tried to prepare themselves by planting and growing more winter wheat in warmer climates, Maassr, who was not involved in the research, told CNN.
But that strategy could not last forever.
The weather will warm up again, so farmers will need to adjust.
“We’ll have to adjust our plans and how we do our wheat production,” Maasstner said.
Maassner said the wheat market will become more fragmented as more farmers are forced to invest more in more expensive wheat varieties.
“That will mean more farmers, more wheat,” he said.
“I think that will cause the prices of wheat to increase even more.”
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