European Onion Association 


Delayed start of onion harvest in many parts of Europe

(AMI) - A cold and, in many areas, wet spring has had an impact on the development of onion crops in the northern growing regions of Europe. The situation in southern Europe was quite different. In Spain, a major producing country, conditions were largely ideal. These are the results of the Mid-Summer Meeting 2021 of the Euronion working group. The meeting took place at the end of June.

In almost all Northern European producing countries, the harvest of winter sown onions and set onions has started somewhat delayed. However, the yields of these early onions are mostly described as normal, but in some cases also as very good. France is reporting of record yields in sown onions around Dijon. In Great Britain, for set onions above-average yields are seen.

The following spring sown onions are partly delayed. In many countries harvest is hampered by above average rainfall. It is too early to estimate the yields. In some cases, the cultivated surface has been significantly expanded. This is the case in Germany and the Netherlands. There was a slight increase in Denmark as well. In France and the UK, the surface is said to have remained stable.

Good crop development in Spain

In Spain, acreage has been reduced, but yields have been high so far due to favourable weather conditions. This and the weak demand from the out-of-home catering sector explain the current low price level. Since Spain exports a good part of its onions, the price situation has an impact on the new harvest in other countries. France in particular is currently feeling the effects. The situation in Italy is difficult to assess, as many regional varieties are produced in different growing regions. However, the cold March and hot April have led to uneven emergence in many areas, especially for yellow onions. For the near future until autumn, however, the market is expected to be well supplied or even oversupplied. The yield situation for onions in Poland is assessed relatively pessimistically; there, large areas are said to have been lost after poor emergence. The development of spring sown onions is still very delayed there.

US: Heat wave takes its toll on onions

The situation in the USA is quite different. In the western regions - where important growing areas for storage onions are located - the crops have suffering from an extreme heat wave in June and beginning of July. The crops started well, but have suffered from the heat. In contrast, crops in the eastern parts of the USA are developing well. The acreage has hardly changed compared to last year.

(August 17, 2021)