Drought in the east of New Zealand could be the main consequence affecting EU agriculture, if the El Nino weather pattern develops, as predicted by global weather forecasters.
This pattern normally slightly reduces New Zealand’s agricultural output, and restricts milk production growth.
During El Nino, both Australia and New Zealand are susceptible to hot, dry summers and accompanying drought.
In Australia’s case, El Nino reduces wheat export, and drives up global wheat prices.
However, global grain prices remain near multi-month lows, despite the expected El Nino effect — largely because similar calls for bad weather in 2014 did not come to pass, and instead, big crops replenished global stocks.
The US and, to a lesser extent, China have been winners from El Nino’s effects.
This weather pattern typically brings wet weather to California, good news for the drought-stricken Golden State, the leading agricultural producer in the US, and by far the biggest milk producer.
India is expected to bear the brunt of the 2015 El Nino event.
El Nino is caused by warm ocean water in the central and east-central equatorial Pacific
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