- 2 Apr 2019 11:18 AM
- Budapest Business Journal
Harvests will be bad this year, resulting in the loss of millions of tons in crops, the president of National Chamber of Agriculture (NAK), Tamás Petőházi said.
Irrigation would be the only solution for the problem, but today only 80 hectares of field of the total 2.9 million hectares in need of water are sprinkled. The area should be increased more than threefold, which requires government assistance.
Petőházi added that a development project to increase irrigated areas to one million hectares would take 15-20 years; the obstacle is bureaucracy, he said.
Irrigation equipment can water an area 500 meters wide, but Hungarian land property is very fragmented. Sprinkling of such a wide territory typically requires cooperation between at least ten owners and land users.
According to NAK, the country usually imports wheat from Ukraine even in better years, which is mainly due to cheaper prices.
The annual need edges up to 2.9 million tons of wheat. Hungarian agriculture produces an annual four million tons of wheat a year even if crops are hit by dry weather conditions.
Last year’s annual production was around five million tons, hvg.hu said.