Due to a long and cool spring, the start of the asparagus and strawberry season was significantly delayed this year. According to the State Statistical Office, around 10,800 tons (t) of asparagus were harvested in Baden-Württemberg, based on preliminary data from the preliminary asparagus and strawberry survey. This means that the harvest volume recovered from the previous year’s poor result due to Corona, with an increase of 15%. The yield per hectare is expected to be 4.5 tons/hectare (t/ha), also exceeding the previous year’s result by 5 %, but still 6 % below the long-term average (2015/2020). Crop size is expected to increase slightly to 2 700 ha. Asparagus is mainly grown in the districts of Karlsruhe, Rhein-Neckar-Kreis and Breisgau-Hochschwarzwald.
The extreme weather conditions, from frost in the flowering period to June heat, were a challenge for strawberry growers and had a particular impact on outdoor crop yields, which are expected to be around 18% lower than last year at 8.6 t/ha. In addition, according to the preliminary figures, the negative trend of outdoor cultivation (1,600 ha; -9%) continues. According to the estimates, open field strawberries will only reach a volume of 14 200 t (-25 %) in 2021, significantly lower than in the previous year and the average of the past years (-33 %). Instead, farmers continue to invest in the more weather-independent crops in foil tunnels or greenhouses. Production is expected to grow to 430 ha (+2%) in 2021, already accounting for one-third of the total strawberry crop at 7,400 tons. The most important strawberry growing areas are located in the central Rhine plain, on Lake Constance and around Heilbronn.
Final figures on the cultivation and harvest of vegetables and strawberries are expected to be available in February 2022.