French Soft Wheat Sowing 76% Complete By 2 November
French farmers had sown 76% of the expected soft wheat area for next year's harvest by 2 November, compared with 66% a week earlier, farm office FranceAgriMer said on Friday.
Soft wheat sowing remained both ahead of the pace last year, when 63% of the area had been sown by the same week, and in line with the average rate of the past five years, FranceAgriMer said in its weekly cereal crop report.
Progress was slower than in the previous two weeks, suggesting heavy showers last week held up some field work.
However, traders and analysts are generally optimistic about France's sowing campaign, expecting soft wheat to recoup the large amount of area lost last year during a very wet autumn.
Soft wheat crops had now emerged on an estimated 48% of the expected area, up from 22% a week earlier and 36% a year ago, FranceAgriMer said.
For winter barley, an estimated 87% of the area had been sown against 80% the previous week and 78% a year earlier.
Crops had emerged on an estimated 62% of the winter barley area, up from 32% the prior week and ahead of a year-earlier 54%.
Harvesting of grain maize was nearing an end, with 94% of the crop gathered by Monday.
FranceAgriMer said the median date of maize harvesting remained nine days ahead of the five-year average and 17 days ahead of last year, when the soggy autumn weather also disrupted the maize harvest.