- This year, Polish farmers have been hit twice – by drought and floods
- The grain yield will be less than expected, 35 million tons
- Despite the Russian blockade on grain exports from Ukraine, its prices in the world did not rise
- Many Polish fruit growers want to start growing cereals
- In Poland, there is no real insurance offer for farmers
successful crop It depends on many factors – in the middle of the last year, farmers decide what and where to plant and how much fertilizer to buy. The most important thing is always the weather. Farmers who harvested grain and rapeseed at the end of July should not complain about the crops, but the past few days have seen a breakdown in the weather in many parts of the country. There is less grain, and it is also wet and requires drying, which of course increases costs and reduces crop efficiency.
– At the same time, we are still feeling the effects of a very severe dehydrationFor many farmers, the situation is dire, because the soil has never had a chance to hold enough water to build a crop. Let’s remember that Water shortage is a permanent phenomenon in some areasThat is why in one part of the country we will harvest 11 tons of wheat per hectare, and in another place we will enjoy 4 tons. There is no “average” throughout Poland – says Interia Biznes dr hab. Krzysztof Łyskawa of the Poznań University of Economics and Business is an expert on Mentor.
In the spring, there were talks about harvesting almost 35 million tons of grain, and today it is known that it will be even lessBut this does not mean that prices will rise and farmers will get more money for their work.
– Prices are shaped by the global situation and many other factors that are not influenced by the farmer. The method of managing the risks available to him is to hoard grain and wait for a favorable price for the expenses incurred. However, this does not solve the liquidity problem – the Polish farmer has a full warehouse and an empty wallet. He saves himself with loans, but may turn into a trap if he loses crops the following year as a result of drought or hail. For the sector, there is no other way but to unite efforts, creating groups of producers to balance the position of the intermediaries – our interlocutor believes.
Large farms maintain extensive accountingSo it is easier for them to monitor costs and calculate revenue from signed contracts. The younger ones often act haphazardly and haphazardly.
– Fertilizers purchased in the fall, which were very expensive at the time, are now becoming a serious burden for small farmers. There is some decrease in grain purchase prices by 7-8 per cent. Within a few hours – in a short time the farmers lose all their margins and face the situation of “to be or not to be” – explains the expert.
Growers of soft fruits – raspberries or currants – are in a worse position, because often this year’s picking is not worth it. On the Internet, we can easily find pictures of advertisements hanging on the fences of the orchards, such as: “Please choose what you want, you don’t have to pay.”
– There were years when fruit growers had a surplus of money, in which they invested, for example, in new machines. now Our year is weaker and many of them say: “I don’t want to eat fruit anymore, because it is safer to grow grain.”. As a result, they sell their equipment at a loss in order to save the balance sheet for the year, and they also have to incur additional expenses for the purchase of new and different machines – notes Dr. Krzysztof Leskawa.
As experts admit, some farmers – especially fruit growers – are de facto… out of the insurance business. Companies in this industry fear frost-related losses and either don’t want to insure them at all, or they charge more than 20 percent for it. harvest values.
– After all, none of us will decide on such insurance terms, for example, for our car. No wonder it doesn’t do this, which is why even a breeder with good market access will suffer a huge loss in the event of a frost. The underwriters do not understand the specificity of farming because they do not have contracts from which they can learn it, and the farmers themselves do not insure because they do not have a real offer. Something needs to be done about this episode, the expert argues, a mutual exchange of information is needed.
In the Polish supply chain: Producer – Intermediary – Recipient, bears only the first risk. However, the model of mutual insurance is known in the world – it consists in distributing risks among all participants in the chain. They are creating a fund that will allow them to do without outside insurance at all.
Mutual insurance in agriculture has been known to Poland since the end of the eighteenth century. However, it requires mutual trust and patience in setting up such a fund, as it is not immediately able to cover all losses. In Italy the farmers’ groups are so powerful that they set the price they accept and, instead of looking for insurance companies, they wait for their offers from which they choose the best. But this requires a change in the insurance industry’s mentality and understanding of how agriculture works – sums up Dr. Hap. Krzysztof Łyskawa of the Poznań University of Economics and Business is an expert on Mentor.
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