Mild autumn weather leads to increased winter cropping

More farmers are planning to harvest winter crops in 2023 according to AHDB’s Early Bird Survey, likely due to the favourable weather conditions and wider drilling window this autumn.

The Early Bird Survey is carried out every autumn by The Andersons Centre, the Association of Independent Crop Consultants (AICC) and other agronomists to assess national cropping intentions.

As UK area information is yet to be published for this year, the 2022 area data shown below uses the England area from the Defra June Survey, combined with the areas for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland from the AHDB Planting and Variety survey.

This year’s Early Bird Survey represents the intentions of farmers across the UK, covering an area of 502Kha. Provisional results from data collected up until 8th November 2022 are shown below:

  • The intended wheat area for harvest 2023 is predicted to be 1,803Kha, down only by 0.1% compared to the previous year. Although they have dropped somewhat since the spring, feed wheat prices continue to remain high in the UK due to the war in Ukraine curtailing the global supply
  • The total barley area is forecast to be down by 1.7% on the year at 1,089Mha, as a result of reduced spring barley planting intentions outweighing the rise in intended winter barley plantings
  • The winter barley area is predicted to be 4.1% higher than the previous year, at 454Kha. If realised, the 2023 harvest would see the largest winter barley area since 2003 (455Kha)
  • The spring barley area is expected to be down 5.4% on the year at 635Kha, which would be the smallest area since 2012 (618Kha)
  • The estimated oat area for the 2023 harvest is at 162Kha, representing a 9.5% drop from 2022 (179Kha)
  • Oilseed rape (OSR) planting intentions for 2023 sit at 415Kha, up by a significant 13.4% on the year. If realised, this would be the second consecutive year of OSR area growth in the UK.

Olivia Bonser, market intelligence analyst at AHDB, said: “The provisional results of this year’s Early Bird Survey are unsurprising. Historically high global grain prices supported by the war in Ukraine, combined with favourable autumn weather and a larger drilling window, has impacted planting decisions for 2023.

“However, higher fertiliser cost and the impact on the 2023 crop quality and/or quantity should growers apply less fertiliser to mitigate some of this cost, will be something to monitor going forward.”

To read the full summary, visit:

© Farmers Guide 2024. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use Privacy Policy

Website Design by Unity Online

We have moved!

We’ve now moved to our new office in Stowmarket. If you wish to contact us please use our new address:

Unit 3-4 Boudicca Road, Suffolk Central Business Park, Stowmarket, IP14 1WF

Thank you,

The Farmers Guide Team