In semi-arid areas, an operational grain yield forecasting system, which could help decision-makers to plan annual imports, is needed. It can be challenging to monitor the crop canopy and production capacity of plants, especially cereals. Many models, based on the use of remote sensing or agro-meteorological models, have been developed to estimate the biomass and grain yield of cereals. Remote sensing has demonstrated its strong potential for the monitoring of the vegetation's dynamics and temporal variations. Through the use of a rich database, acquired over a period of two years for more than 60 test fields, and from 20 optical satellite SPOT/HRV images, the aim of the present study is to evaluate the feasibility of two approaches to estimate the dynamics and yields of cereals in the context of semi-arid, low productivity regions in North Africa.<p> </p> The first approach is based on the application of the semi-empirical growth model SAFY “Simple Algorithm For Yield estimation”, developed to simulate the dynamics of the leaf area index and the grain yield, at the field scale. The model is able to reproduce the time evolution of the LAI of all fields. However, the yields are under-estimated. Therefore, we developed a new approach to improve the SAFY model. The grain yield is function of LAI area in the growth period between 25 March and 5 April. This approach is robust, the measured and estimated grain yield are well correlated. Finally, this model is used in combination with remotely sensed LAI measurements to estimate yield for the entire studied site.