Ukraine’s Grain Harvest Seen Falling From Record on Dry Weather


Dry weather may stand in the way of another record-breaking grain harvest in Ukraine.

Production of corn, wheat and other grains is expected to reach 60 million to 65 million metric tons in the season that starts in July, according to UkrAgroConsult, a Kiev-based consultancy. That compares with a record 66 million tons this season, according to official estimates.

Some growing areas haven’t received enough rain and crop yields may shrink, said Liza Malyshko, an analyst at UkrAgroConsult in Kiev. Current dryness across Europe and the Black Sea region is a concern, but not yet a significant issue, AgResource said in a report this week. However, long-term forecasts suggest conditions could persist into the summer. Ukraine could match last year’s record crop if the weather improves in the next two months, Malyshko said. The planted area for grains will be similar to the current season and cropconditions are average or a bit better.

"It will be close to the record," said Sergey Feofilov, general director of UkrAgroConsult. Farmers are also moving to more profitable crops, such as oilseeds instead of wheat and corn, he said.

Other forecasts:
* Grain yields expected at 4.05 to 4.1 tons a hectare this season. That’s in line with previous years, but down from a record 4.2 tons last year.
* About 40 to 45 percent of winter crops are in good condition and 43 percent are satisfactory.
* About 17 percent in poor or not sprouted condition.

Production estimates for 2017-18 season
* Wheat output at 24 million to 25 million tons. Compares with 25 million to 26 million tons in 2016-17.
* Corn output 25 million to 26 million tons. Compares with 26 million tons in 2016-17.
* Corn planting should start in a week. Expected acreage is 4.3 million hectares, similar to last year.



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