Good weather conditions in Ireland and the UK for the development of winter tillage crops and sowing of spring crops have provided a positive grain yield outlook for both countries, the latest Monitoring Agriculture ResourceS (Mars) report says.
There was uniform weather conditions across both countries for the period examined (March 1 to April 20), the report says, with temperatures above average in April.
Frosts, if they occurred, were mild, with temperatures not dropping below -4 degrees Celsius, it says.
The warm and sunny conditions prevailing in April were particularly beneficial to boost crop growth and development, the Mars report says.
In Ireland, tillage crops are slightly behind but are recovering well from the less favourable colder-than usual end of winter and early spring, it says.
Warmer-than-usual conditions prevailed almost everywhere in Europe during the period of review, especially over north-eastern Europe, where temperatures were more than 2°C above the long-term average, the Mars report says.
There was also drier-than-usual conditions over large tillage areas in central and western Europe particularly in north Portugal, north-west France and southern England, the report says.
The Mars report says that the soil moisture contents are still satisfactory in the regions with deficits however, more rain would be welcomed now, especially in Portugal.
However, overall the yield outlook is positive and somewhat above the long-term average, it says.
Overall the yield outlook is positive for tillage farmers even though it is down from last year but above the five year average.