We assessed impacts of recent weather extremes on yields of major food and feed crops in the Netherlands. Impacts on the arable crops potato, sugar beet, onion and winter wheat were analysed in 12 regions. Impacts on the forage crop yields grass and maize were analysed for 6 regions. This study shows impacts of weather extremes on crop yields, mediated by soil and agricultural management (irrigation, fungicides, etc). We show that two large scale weather extremes had a major impact on crop yields. The 1998 extremely wet harvesting period had a major negative impact on all tuber crops (potato, sugar beet, onion). The 2018 extremely dry summer period had a major negative impact on grass and onion. One region was found to be particularly sensitive to drought, which seems to be related to this province having poor access to irrigation. Much larger negative impact of drought in this one region shows that impact of extremes can be strongly mitigated by agricultural management (irrigation). Therefore, should access to irrigation decline in the future, impact of drought would be larger than reported here. Our analysis contributes to a deeper quantitative understanding of which weather extremes actually affect crop production and subsequently benefits the quest for adaptation options.
Pagina's / pages: 10
Type: Scientific article
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Keywords in English: Weather extremes, Crop yields, Drought, Harvesting