Hungary Newsflash Week 14

International trade news, sectoral statistics, wine medals, honey production- The week in Hungarian agriculture

Jars of honey on a table
Beeld: ©PollyDot

Weekly briefing

  • Agriculture statistics: The Central Statistical Office (KSH) has published the results of its 2020 agriculture census. The bureau conducts an overarching census of Hungarian agricultural sectors every ten years. Between 2010 and 2020, the number of agricultural producers in Hungary has decreased from 351 thousand to 234 thousand. This affects animal husbandry more than plant cultivation. While in 2010 animal farmers constituted 46% of the total number of producers, in 2020, this figure was 25%. The share of plant cultivators increased from 41% to 67%, the share of mixed farms decreased from 13% to 9%. However, the ratio of educated farm managers is increasing. 53% of farm managers in 2020 did not have a decree, but the share of farmers with medium-level education was 19% and that of higher education was 9%. About half of young farm managers are highly educated.
  • Agro export figures: According to the latest international trade figures by the Institute of Agricultural Economics, in 2020, the total agricultural and food industry export profit of Hungary increased by 2.3% to €9.65 billion, and imports increased by 0.9% to €6.36 billion, making the agricultural net export balance €3.2 billion. This figure is €160 million higher than that of the previous year.
    After cereals, this year the second most profitable Hungarian agricultural and food export category was food industry byproducts and animal feed. The export profit of this category increased by 1% to €962.3 million, while its import value decreased by 3% to €507.2 million, making its share 6% in the total net export value.
  • Industry: The monthly growth of Hungarian industrial production has reached its highest peak in February since 2019, reports the news portal HVG. Net corrected figures for the growth of industrial output in February were 3.9% higher than in February 2020 and 4.8% higher than they were in January, a growth rate only second to that of November 2019.
  • Viticulture: At this year’s Chardonnay du Monde international wine competition in France, Hungarian winemakers won one gold and eight silver medals. The Hungarian gold winner is the Thummerer Vinery’s 2019 Egri Chardonnay Battonage. The prestigious event has been held for the 28th time this year and winemakers from 36 countries entered 604 wines into the competition.
  • Apiculture: In a recent article the news portal Magyar Mezőgazdaság reported that Hungary’s honey production has the highest per-area bee population (13 hives per km2), and over 20 thousand honey bee farms in Hungary have 1.2 million bee hives, annually producing 25-27 thousand tons of honey, which is 10% of the EU’s annual honey output. However, Hungarians consume very little honey – Hungary’s per capita honey consumption is one quarter of that of Germany. Between 60-70% of all Hungarian honey is exported, most of it not as a finished consumer product: 80% of the export honey is sold as industrial commodity in steel tanks.