May 2017 CropWatch bulletin. This latest bulletin focuses on crops that were either growing or harvested between January and April 2017. The bulletin covers prevailing weather conditions, including extreme factors, as well as crop condition and size of cultivated areas, paying special attention to the major worldwide producers of maize, rice, wheat, and soybean. The bulletin also describes current crop condition and prospects in China and presents a first global production estimate for crops to be harvested throughout 2017.
Key messages from the report:
- Agroclimatic indicators. No large anomalies were observed, but abnormal conditions include below average rainfall in the winter crop areas in Eastern Asia and in the Mediterranean basin, as well as an El Niño induced drought persisting in East Africa.
- Excess rain in Peru, Ecuador and Colombia. Excess precipitation started in December 2016 and has lasted for months, severely affecting millions of people and causing damages in the billions of US dollars.
- Global production outlook. The current CropWatch global production estimates for 2017 are 1,056 million tons of maize (+5% compared to 2016 output), 761 million tons of rice (+3%), 730 million tons of wheat (-1%), and 305 million tons of soybeans (-3%).
- El Niño update. The likelihood of another El Niño occurring during 2017 has been put at 50%; another El Niño may dramatically alter the current outlook in South America, South and Southeast Asia, and the Horn of Africa.
- China conditions. In China, positive rainfall anomalies were largest in Inner Mongolia (RAIN, +60% compared to 2016, accompanied by above-average temperature), while southwest China (-17%), Lower Yangtze (-21%), and southern China (-7%) all recorded rainfall deficits and reduced sunshine.
- Pests and diseases. The impact of pests and diseases was relatively severe in mid-May in China’s main wheat producing regions.
- China production. CropWatch projections for 2017 production in China are 121 million tons of wheat (winter and summer crops) (+2%), 205 million tons of rice (+2%),12 million tons of soybeans (-3%) and 212 million tons of maize (+6% over 2016).
IntroductionThis CropWatch bulletin summarizes global crop condition developments and agroclimatic factors from January 1 to April 30, 2017. Chapters 1 through 4 zoom in from a global overview of agroclimatic indicators to detailed descriptions of crop and environmental conditions in large production zones, to individual country analyses covering 30 major producers and exporters and China. A special focus section is included in Chapter 5, covering this time CropWatch food production estimates, disasters, and an update on El Niño. This first part of the report includes the cover, table of contents, abbreviations, and a short overview of the different sections of the bulletin.Download
Chapter 1. Global agroclimatic patternsChapter 1 describes the CropWatch agroclimatic indicators for rainfall (RAIN), temperature (TEMP), and radiation (RADPAR), along with the agronomic indicator for potential biomass (BIOMSS) for sixty-five global Mapping and Reporting Units (MRU). Indicator values for all MRUs are provided in Annex A.Download
Chapter 2. Crop and environmental conditions in major production zonesChapter 2 presents the same indicators—RAIN, TEMP, RADPAR, and BIOMSS—used in Chapter 1 and combines them with agronomic indicators—cropped arable land fraction (CALF), maximum vegetation condition index (VCIx), and minimum vegetation health index (VHIn)—to describe crop and environmental conditions in six global major production zones (MPZ). (See also Annex C for more information about these zones.)Download
Chapter 3. Main producing and exporting countriesBuilding on the global patterns presented in previous chapters, this chapter assesses the situation of crops in 30 key countries that represent the global major producers and exporters or otherwise are of global or CropWatch relevance. First, the overview section (3.1) pays attention to all countries worldwide, to provide some spatial and thematic detail to the overall features described in section 1.1. In section 3.2, CropWatch monitored countries are features, and for each country maps are included illustrating NDVI-based crop condition development graphs, maximum VCI, and spatial NDVI patterns with associated NDVI profiles. Additional information about indicators per country is provided in Annex A, while Annex B provides 2017 production estimates for Argentina, Brazil and United States.Download
Chapter 4. ChinaChapter 4 presents a detailed analysis for China, focusing on the seven most productive agro-ecological regions of the east and south: Northeast China, Inner Mongolia, Huanghuaihai, Loess region, Lower Yangtze, Southwest China, and Southern China. After a brief overview of the agroclimatic and agronomic conditions over the monitoring period (section 4.1), sections 4.2 and 4.3 present China winter crop production (4.2) as well as an update on pests and diseases that have affected agricultural production over the reporting period (4.3). Next, section 4.4 presents an import and export outlook for China, and the chapter finishes with the CropWatch analysis for each of the seven individual regions (4.5). Additional information on the agroclimatic indicators for agriculturally important Chinese provinces are listed in table A.11 in Annex A.Download
Chapter 5. Focus and perspectivesBuilding on the CropWatch analyses presented in chapters 1 through 4, this chapter presents initial CropWatch food production estimates for 2017 (section 5.1), as well as sections on recent disaster events (section 5.2), and an update on El Niño (5.3).Download
Annex A. Agroclimatic indicatorsTables in this Annex provide additional information about the agroclimatic indicators—RAIN, TEMP, and RADPAR—as well as BIOMSS for the various CropWatch spatial units. Those units include the Monitoring and Reporting Units (MRU); the thirty-one main producing and exporting countries; and regions or provinces within large countries—Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, India, Kazakhstan, Russia, and the United States; and China.Download
Annex B. 2017 Production estimatesAnnex B includes tables with 2017 CropWatch production estimates for Argentina, Brazil, and the United States.Download
Annex C. Quick reference guide to CropWatch indicators, spatial units and methodologiesAnnex C presents a brief overview of the CropWatch indicators and spatial units (including the MRUs, MPZs, and countries), along with a description of the CropWatch production estimation methodology and methodology to determine the severity of the occurrence .Download