London | Reuters — British wheat imports were sharply above year earlier levels in July, with Canada and France the main suppliers, customs data showed on Friday.
Wheat imports for the month totalled 149,337 tonnes, up from 91,965 tonnes in July 2019, the figures show.
July is the first month of the marketing year.
Imports from Canada climbed to 72,345 tonnes, sharply up from 22,101 tonnes in the same month last year while France supplied 40,582 tonnes, up from 30,541 tonnes.
Britain’s wheat crop may fall about 35 per cent year-on-year to around 10.5 million tonnes this year, increasing the nation’s appetite for imports this season.
Shipments in the early part of the season may also be boosted by uncertainty about trade arrangements after Britain’s departure from the European Union with a transition agreement due to expire on Dec. 31.
Wheat exports in July totalled just 11,968 tonnes, down from 46,526 tonnes in the same month in 2019.
Britain was a net exporter of wheat in the 2019-20 season but is seen becoming a net importer in the current 2020-21 season due to the sharp decline in domestic production.
— Reporting for Reuters by Nigel Hunt.