French wheat quality update shows further move toward lower proteins

According to latest analysis by FranceAgriMer, 27% of French wheat crop has a protein content of less than 11%

With most samples now in, a preliminary analysis of France’s wheat crop in the week to August 23 showed a further, although small, increase in lower protein wheat compared to that published by farm agency FranceAgriMer a week ago.

In an update published last Thursday, the agency said the analysis, done in conjunction with crop institute Arvalis, showed 27% of the crop had a protein content of less than 11% with 95% of expected samples collected, down from 24% in last week’s preliminary analysis based on 76% of expected samples.

In 2021, FranceAgriMer reported just 5% of wheat below an 11% protein content, which is often seen as a minimum standard for milling wheat.

In the latest analysis, a further 31% of the crop was found to have a protein content of 11-11.5% as of August 23, down from 33% in last week’s analysis, while 23% was at 11.5-12%, 12% at 12-12.5%, and 7% at above 12.5% protein.

In 2021, 15% of the crop was found to have a protein content of 11-11.5%, 37% 11.5-12%, 28% 12-12.5% and 15% above 12.5%.

The agencies’ final report on French wheat quality will be published in September.

In terms of weight, FranceAgriMer recorded a slight increase in heavier weights compared with last week’s analysis, with 2% of the soft wheat coming in at less than 74 kg/hl, 11% at 74-76 kg/hl, 27% at 76-78 kg/hl, 35% at 78-80 kg/hl and 25% at higher than 80 kg/hl.

A separate analysis of samples classed 42% of the current soft wheat crop as superior, up from 40% last week, 12% as premium, unchanged, and 29% as average, up from 26%, according to the agency. These samples represented 84% of the final number expected.

Protein content has been a concern for the wheat crop in a number of European countries this year, with observers in Germany, the Baltic states, Ukraine and Russia noting the quality overall is lower than last year.

Keep up to date with the wheat market and trends shaping the agricultural landscape, visit our dedicated wheat market insights page.

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