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Farming: Oilseed rape production hits a 20 year high in Scotland

By David Porter

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The Chief Statistician has released figures on the 2023 Scottish harvest, showing cereal production and yield fell, by 6 per cent and 2 per cent respectively, from their record 2022 figures.

Cereal yield has been affected by a challenging summer. Picture: David Porter
Cereal yield has been affected by a challenging summer. Picture: David Porter

However, overall cereal yield remained just above the ten-year average.

Weather conditions in 2023 led to one of the more challenging harvests in recent years.

Overall cereal production decreased to just under 3.1 million tonnes, despite a small increase in planted area.

Barley and wheat production both decreased from their 2022 figures.

This was mostly due to lower yields.

Despite this dip, production and yield remain at or just above the ten-year average for these crops.

Oats production in 2023 continued to decrease over time against the ten-year average.

Production and yield fell, by 7 per cent and 4 per cent respectively, compared to 2022.

Oat yields remain close to the ten-year average.

Oilseed rape production was at its highest level in the past two decades.

Production was 166,000 tonnes – an increase of 10 per cent from 2022.

Planted area was also at its largest level in 20 years.

This, combined with above average yield, made for a very good year for oilseed rape production.

The full statistical publication provides estimates of land use area, yield and production for spring and winter barley, wheat, oats and oilseed rape for 2023.

The 2023 final estimates of yield and production are based on land use areas estimated from the Agricultural Census and production results from the Cereal Survey 2023.

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