Investment must be stepped up to improve infrastructures and storage capacity in the EU grain and oilseeds sector to both maximise trade and ensure that EU livestock producers have good access to feed, according to new research carried out by Rabobank and Copa-Cogeca.
The two organisations warn that unless action is taken, especially on storage requirements, the EU will not be able to keep pace with rising production over the next decade.
“Huge investment opportunities exist in the EU,” said Copa-Cogeca, adding that it will be crucial that storage capacity projects are included in the EU’s 2014-2024 investment plans, which carry a funding commitment of 315 billion from European Commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker
Rabobank pointed out 2014 had produced a bigger than usual EU grain harvest and that this trend was expected to continue until 2024.
“The EU became the world’s top wheat export market this year and will be the cornerstone of trade in the future,” said Rabobank. “Storage capacity is currently not sufficient and will not be in 2024 unless action is taken.”
Copa-Cogeca also used the publication of the storage research to urge the EU agriculture sector in general to make a much stronger play to be part of the so-called Juncker plan, pointing out that while around 1000 applications were already on the investment table in Brussels very few or none related to agriculture.
“This must be revised,” said Copa-Cogeca.