Bulgaria expects a good wheat crop in 2022, almost matching last year's record harvest, that will allow for ample exports, a senior agriculture ministry official has said.
"We expect the wheat crop to be close to last year's. Whether it would be 6.5 million tonnes or 6.7 million will depend on the condition of the sowings in different parts of the country," Petar Kirovski, who is in charge of grain crop sowings at the ministry, told Reuters in a phone interview.
The Black Sea country is among Europe's largest wheat exporters and reaped a record-high wheat crop of 7.1 million tonnes last year, up from 4.7 million tonnes in 2020, a particularly poor year, and 6.1 million tonnes in 2019.
With an annual domestic consumption of about 1.5 million tonnes, Bulgaria has exported close to 5 million tonnes of its 2021 wheat crop so far, Kirovski said.
"Given the expected good harvest this year, there will be more than enough surplus grains for exports. Over 4 million tonnes can definitely be shipped abroad," he said.
The Balkan country's barley sowings were also in good condition and the expected crop will be close to last year's, when farmers took in over 680,000 tonnes of barley, he said.
Analysts and growers said last week that an exceptionally early heatwave in France and Spain may further stress wheat crops after a dry spring though an expected easing in temperature and showers across the region this month should avert large crop losses.