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Record yields for many crops in Ireland in 2022

2022 harvest estimated at 2.42 million tonnes

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Horticulture

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15 December 2022 | 0

The Harvest Report published by Teagasc estimates that the production of cereals was 2.42 million tonnes in 2022. This represents an increase of 93,200 tonnes (4%) from harvest 2021. There was record yields in spring barley, oilseed rape and spring oats.

Total cereal area increased by 4.3% on 2021. Favourable weather conditions in autumn 2021 led to an increase in the area of winter cereals. The area of winter wheat, winter barley and winter oats increased by 8%, 9% and 8% respectively. Winter oilseed rape increased by 45% and the total area of beans, including winter crops, was 11.5% higher than 2021.

The area of spring barley was similar to the previous year. The Tillage Incentive Scheme, Introduced by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine in Spring 2022, was a big factor in the maintenance of the spring barley area, as a decrease would have been expected following the large area of winter cereals sown the previous autumn.

Yields in all cereal crops were above the five-year average. It was a record year for spring barley, winter oilseed rape and spring oats with yields in all three crops exceeding previous records. Average yield of winter wheat was 11.0 tonnes per hectare, which equals the previous wheat record set in 2015.

Weather conditions at harvest were excellent and all crops were harvested at lower-than-average moisture content.

The good weather during harvest allowed straw to be saved without additional cost leading to above average yield and quality.  The Straw Incorporation Measure (SIM) was very successful with a very high level of uptake in the scheme.

Above average yields and good harvest weather combined with strong grain and straw markets resulted in high financial output from cereals in 2022 but this was offset somewhat by increased costs particularly fertiliser.

Teagasc head of crops knowledge transfer, Michael Hennessy said: “Harvest 2022 was one of the best harvests in recent memory with a combination of good yields and good harvest conditions all combining to make this a profitable seasons for tillage farmers.” But he cautioned that “2023 is going to be more challenging for tillage farmers. We have already seen an increase in seed costs and signals are that fertiliser, plant protection products and machinery costs will all increase in 2023.”

Autumn 2022 Plantings

Estimates are that the winter cereal area is reduced by in excess of 30,000 hectares due to wet weather conditions this autumn.

The area of winter oilseed rape is estimated to have increased to 19,000 hectares due to a combination of an early finish to the harvest, planting opportunities in late August and a strong market for oilseeds.

View the Harvest Report 2022 here teagasccropreport.ie/reports/harvest-report-2022 

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