EU cereal prices are expected to remain below the peaks of five years ago, but above the long-term average, at €168/t to €180/t in 2030, according to the EU's latest outlook report to 2030.
In the early years between now and 2030, prices are expected to be lower than in the longer term, especially for maize and barley, driven by ample global supply, low energy and input costs, and a relatively weak euro.
Barley and maize prices are expected to remain closely aligned.
Total agricultural land use in the EU is expected to continue its decline, though at a slower pace than in the past decade, to 176m hectares by 2030.
In line with this trend, the area of main cereals, permanent grassland and permanent crops are set to further decline in the period to 2030.
Meanwhile, the amount of land used for other arable crops and oilseeds is stabilising, while land used for fodder is increasing slightly.
Although overall agricultural land use is declining, positive yield developments are providing for an overall increase in production.
The report outlines that the domestic soya bean sector is set to continue expanding, albeit at a slower pace compared to recent few years.
Driven by a favourable policy environment, protein crops have recently experienced a strong revival.
Up to 2030, strong demand both for feed purposes and for human consumption, as well as the supportive policy environment, will further drive production growth of soya beans and protein crops.
This, together with some yield improvements, will lead to a further increase in EU production.
However, with a share of only 1.4 % of total crop area, the protein crop area will remain limited.
Demand for feed (from arable crops, fodder and pasture) should grow between now and 2030, despite mixed trends in animal production, according to the report.
The EU forecasts that total feed use should reach 275m tonnes in 2030 for compound feed (low, medium and high-protein content).
Low-protein feed is not expected to grow as sharply.
Higher demand for feed from locally-produced, GM-free and organic crops will positively stimulate domestic feed production.
The area under organic tillage is increasing, now standing at 7% across the EU.
Koen Mondelaers, from DG Agriculture, said that this could increase by up to 10% or more by 2030.
“There is a strong push for more organic and consumer expenditure on organic is growing,” he said.
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