EU rapeseed imports 45% above year-ago level
Year-to-date EU-27 rapeseed imports significantly exceed year-earlier levels, despite a considerably larger EU rapeseed harvest than last year.
In the current crop year 2022-’23, rapeseed imports to the EU-27 climbed significantly. From July through February, member states already imported 4.6 million metric tons from non-EU countries. This was a full 45 percent increase on the same period a year earlier.
The main reason for the large import volume, according to UFOP, is not only abundant supply of EU rapeseed, but also availability and therefore the prices on the global market.
According to information published by Agrarmarkt Informations-Gesellschaft (mbH) (AMI), Ukraine has maintained its top position among the key rapeseed suppliers to the EU in the current crop year despite the continuing war.
With 2.6 million tons, nearly 63 percent more than in the same period a year earlier, the country accounts for 56 percent of EU rapeseed imports. This share compares to 50 percent in 2021-’22.
Australia gained in importance due to a bumper crop and now ranks as the second-most important supplier to the EU with 1.7 million tons and a share of 36.4 percent. This is twice the amount of the same period a year earlier.
By contrast, imports from Canada slumped. At 193,400 tons, the EU took only a fraction of the previous year’s amount of 501,800 tons. In other words, Canada's share in total EU imports dropped 12 percent to 4.2 percent.
Supply from Moldova and Serbia to the EU-27 also declined compared to 2021-’22.
UFOP has noted that the bottlenecks feared last year were mitigated by shipments to EU member states bordering Ukraine. The reason is that suppliers sought alternative delivery routes to the closed or blockaded seaports.
In the case of grain supply to the EU, there are even extreme market distortions at the moment instead of bottlenecks. The Polish farmers association has therefore called for an expansion of bioethanol production capacity to reduce pressure on the market and mitigate climate change. It also wants Super E10 to be introduced across the board on the Polish market as soon as possible.
The Indian prime minister recently announced the expansion of bioethanol production and increase of the blending mandate to 20 percent (E 20).
At the same time, the German government is discussing a phase-out of blending biofuels from cultivated biomass.