Use of grain for feed lessens in Germany

Grain for animal feed declines by 16% in 21-22 marketing year
calendar icon 29 November 2022
clock icon 3 minute read

According to preliminary figures from the Federal Information Center for Agriculture (BZL), the domestic consumption of cereals fell by almost four million tons and amounted to around 39 million tons in the 2021/22 marketing year, according to a report from the Federal Institute for Agriculture and Food in Germany. Almost 54% of the grain is used as feed - that is 4.6 percentage points less than in the previous year.

Almost 23% of grain consumption in Germany was accounted for by food production (+three percentage points), while around 18% (one percentage point less) went into industrial and energy use. Seeds and losses together amounted to almost 6%.

Domestic use for feed decreased

In the 2021/22 marketing year, 20.9 million tons of grain were used in Germany and thus around 16% less for animal feed. Of these, around 6.6 million tons fell on wheat and 5.1 million tons each on barley and maize. The decline in the use of cereals for feed is due, among other things, to the reduced production of compound feed in 2021/22. Pig feed as the most important type of feed in terms of quantity has decreased due to the decreased pig herd. Another reason for the decline is the increased cost of feed components. The decline in domestic use of barley for feed is particularly clear with a minus of 24%.

Wheat, rye and oats continue to be the most important food cereals

8.9 million tons of grain were used for food purposes, 3.4% more compared to the previous year. Common and durum wheat were the most important food cereals with a total consumption of almost 7.4 million tons. Rye followed with 574,000 tons and oats with 499,000 tons. The per capita consumption of cereals increased again in the 2021/22 marketing year (+3.3 percent) and is now 106.6 kilograms. The information refers to the grain value. Converted into flour value, per capita consumption corresponds to 84 kilograms of cereal flour. Statistically, every German citizen consumed 70 kilograms of wheat flour, six kilograms of rye flour, four kilograms of oatmeal and 3.5 kilograms of corn flour in the last marketing year.

The war in Ukraine could explain the increase in food consumption. At the beginning of the war, consumers bought significantly more flour out of concern about supply bottlenecks. In addition, a lot of cereals in the form of finished products such as flour or pasta were delivered to Ukraine as food donations.

Self-sufficiency increases to 109%

Despite a lower harvest, German agriculture was able to provide sufficient cereals and cereal products for the domestic market in the 2021/22 marketing year due to the reduced domestic use. In total for all cereals, the harvest covered 109% of domestic demand (previous year: 101%). The degree of self-sufficiency of common wheat was 126%; barley was 133%. 17% of domestic consumption of durum wheat could be covered by domestic agriculture, in the previous year only 15%.

This and other data on the "supply balance of grain" can be found on the website of the Federal Institute for Agriculture and Food (BLE), in which the BZL is located.

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