Bosnia and Herzegovina – Wheat Import Market of $108 Million


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Winter Wheat (MY 2023/2024) was planted on 62,000 HA, with an expected production of 279,000 MT. The Wheat area increased by 21 percent compared to the MY 2022/2023 area when 280,753 MT of Wheat was harvested on 51,046 HA (average yield of 5.5 MT/HA). During the summer of 2022, drought and scorching temperatures reduced soybean and corn yields and lowered quality. As a result, farmers decided to plant more winter Wheat during the fall of 2022.

Wheat, unlike spring crops, is harvested in July, before the peak of summer, when damaging drought and heat are common. Also, the government increased the Wheat subsidy by 25 percent and provided additional subsidies for fuel and seeds. Farmers reported that fall planting in 2022 was the priciest ever. Seeds and fertilizers were the most expensive inputs, and there was also a lack of available fertilizers. Consequently, decreased fertilizer use (less than 50 kg/HA) might reduce the MY 2023/2024 Wheat yield. Aside from fertilizer, labor was at least 25 percent more expensive than the year before.

Old technology, outdated mechanization, and low investment capabilities affect Wheat quality in BiH. BiH farmers report that they cannot sell their Wheat at prices that compete with cheaper Wheat from neighboring countries such as Serbia. Farmers say that local mills prefer imported Wheat because it is more affordable, while millers say they cannot make good-quality bakery products solely from locally produced Wheat.

The current Wheat stocks are estimated at 100,000 MT. BiH’s grain market is relatively small, and grain mills cannot create more extensive stocks. Thus, the effect of global Wheat price fluctuations is significant. Around 10 percent of Wheat stocks from the previous season are used as animal feed, and some are kept for on-farm use.

Winter Barley was planted on 14,152 HA with an expected production of 53,800. The area for MY 2023/2024 spring Barley is estimated at 3,200 HA. The total 2022/2023 Barley area was 19,269 HA with a production of 82,857 MT (an average of 4.3 MT/HA). Barley consumption is estimated at 60,000 MT and is used for feed. The CY 2022 Barley imports of 14,440 MT were valued at $4.8 million. Barley exports were insignificant.

Regarding other minor crops, triticale (winter) was planted on 11,263 HA in MY 2023/2024 with an expected production of 45,000 MT. Spring triticale area is estimated at 1,400 HA. The total MY 2022/2023 triticale area was 5,090 HA, with production at 20,900 MT (an average of 4.1 MT/HA). Triticale consumption is estimated to be 50,000 MT and is used for animal feed. The CY 2022 triticale imports of 565 MT were valued at $300,000, while triticale exports were insignificant.

The MY 2023/2024 oats (winter) were planted on 3,131 HA with an expected production of 10,000 MT. Spring oats area is estimated to be 4,015 HA. The total MY 2022/2023 oats area was 11,070 HA, producing 44,280 MT (average yield of 4 MT/HA). Oats consumption is estimated at 30,000 MT and is used for animal feed. The CY 2022 imports of oats totaled 2,848 MT and were valued at $600,000.

Wheat Trade in Bosnia and Herzegovina

BiH requires 500,000 MT of Wheat /MY with a per capita consumption of approximately 150 kg. BiH is highly dependent on grain imports. Wheat and Corn are mostly imported from Serbia, Hungary, and Croatia. In Calendar Year (CY) 2022, BiH imported 280,577 MT of Wheat valued at $108 million from Hungary, Serbia, and Croatia. BiH exported 11,683 MT of Wheat, valued at $4.8 million, mainly to Croatia. The CY 2022 Wheat flour imports totaled 43,846, valued at $20.4 million (80 percent from Serbia), and exports reached 15,778 MT, valued at $9.2 million (mainly destined for Montenegro and Macedonia).

Other sources: USDA

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