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U.K. Joins Spain in Drought as Crop Emerge After Winter

April 20, 2012

Full Article at Bloomberg Businessweek

By  Whitney McFerron and Rudy Ruitenberg

U.K. farmers, Europe’s third-largest wheat producers, are facing the worst drought in two decades, joining Spanish growers contending with the driest conditions since 1947 as crops emerge from winter dormancy.

Parts of the U.K. had the least rain since 1992 in the six months through March, the U.K. national weather service said. Spain had its driest December-to-February period in 65 years, the Agriculture Ministry estimates. The west part of France, the region’s top wheat grower, had as little as 42 percent of normal rain this year, European Union data show. There is also lower-than-average precipitation in Germany, where a February cold snap damaged crops, farm lobby Deutscher Bauernverband said.


Southeast and south-central England, the U.K.’s biggest wheat-growing areas, had about 10.9 inches of rain on average in the past six months, the driest for the period since 1992, said Sarah Holland, a spokeswoman for the Met Office, the U.K.’s national weather service. Dry weather may persist through the end of December, the Environment Agency said April 16.

Spain’s average rainfall in the three months ended in February was 2.4 inches, about 30 percent below normal, the Agriculture Ministry estimates.

Full Article at Bloomberg Businessweek

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