Heavy rains during the summer harvest damages crops across the UK. The nation faces a rise in wheat prices after the worst harvest in 40 years.
Recent Downpours Dampen Crops
A farmer from Buckmoorend Farm explained that heavy rain at the time of harvest had left countless heads of grains on the field wasted. He added that the springs were dry and now when the crops are about to ripe, frequent rains are damaging the produce. Besides, several farmers couldn’t plant much wheat in 2019 owing to wetter autumn.
Wheat Output to Decrease by 30%
National Farmers Union (NFU) expects the wheat output to fall by a third this season. Subsequently, prices have started increasing due to short supply. Experts have raised their concerns over the weak currency. They added that markets are uncertain over exports which are pushing the prices of wheat further. Consequently, the prices of grain made products are increasing in UK and other countries as well.
Need to Adapt to Climate Change Rapidly
Hannah Cloke, a Hydrology professor at Reading University, expressed her concerns about climate change. She warned that the UK might run out of wheat in the future if people do not adapt to the changing environment rapidly. Mark McCarthy, the National Climate Information Centre, explains that the intensity of rains during summer and heatwaves after downpours increases owing to climate change.
Lockdown Effect on the Agriculture Sector Exacerbated by the Poor Weather Conditions
NFU stated that farmers face a challenging year, as lockdown also adversely affected their business. It forced several farmers in the UK to throw away the fresh milk owing to halted supply chains. As people opted to dine out less owing to COVID fears, it became a challenge for meat producers to survive. Though it was a short term measure, the lockdown had a long term grappling effect on the agriculture sector of the country. That apart, the uncertainty of a no-deal Brexit at the year-end
In all, the poor weather condition combined with no-deal Brexit will probably leave the UK as a net importer of grain this year.