Market News & Headlines >> French Wheat Area Up Again

Despite weak prices, French farmers have expanded winter wheat seedings for the 2016 harvest, which should keep wheat area at an 80-year high, France's farm ministry said on Friday.

In its first estimates for next year's crop, the ministry pegged soft wheat seedings for 2016 harvest at 5.22 million hectares (12.90 million acres), up 1.5% from this year’s 5.17 million hectares, which was the highest level since 1936. For durum wheat, the ministry estimated planted area at 354,000 hectares (874,734 acres) up 11%.

Winter crop seeding is virtually finished in France and nearly all soft wheat fields remained in very good shape as of Dec. 4, with the farm office FranceAgriMer rating crop conditions 98% good/excellent, up from the 93% reported a year ago. Some 97% of the crop had emerged, the agency said.