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October 14, 18:13 Source: APK-Inform Views: 486

Results of the harvesting campaign-2017 in Russia - too high price for agrarians

 

2017 became a test the strength and skills for most Russian agrarians, in terms of difficult weather conditions, how to minimize the losses and receive record harvest volumes. The current article focuses on the harvesting campaign 2017, summarizes the results, analyzes the trends and solutions faced by agrarians.

As a reminder, in the current year the planting campaign was under the threat of failure. In most Federal Districts, the rates of spring field works were rather low due to sharp fluctuations in temperature, heavy precipitations in the form of rain, snow and hail. Of course, in such weather conditions the majority of agricultural producers was extremely pessimistic, and gave their best to level down any influence of the weather factor. We should note that many agrarians applied not only mineral fertilizers, but also various types of other supplementary fertilizing and growth-promoting agent for preservation of crop development. Therefore, the share of re-planting works was minimized, and in the Central and Volga regions spring crops sprouted with a delay of no more than 5-10 days.

"In the current year we had to fight for the harvest. In particular, heavy rains and frosts had a negative impact on development of spiked grain crops. In order to prevent lodging, we paid great attention to additional fertilizing, which not only assisted to grain to undergo stress, but also continue developing in the vegetation period. However, due to the long-lived low temperatures, the vegetation period was too long, which somewhat postponed the period of harvesting works," - commented an agrarian from Stavropol Krai.

In the vegetation period, in the European part of Russia agrarians faced large-scale precipitations which contributed to development of not only weeds, but also diseases. Low temperatures did not allow to agricultural crops to actively develop. The reporting situation contributed to the need for multiple application of crop protection products in order to keep the future harvest, which required considerable capital investments. At the same time, in the Ural and Siberian Districts the weather was more favourable to agrarians, who often faced the traditional seasonal difficulties only in the reporting regions. So, beginning of the harvesting campaign was delayed only in the European part of Russia, but agrarians of the Ural and Siberian Districts entered their fields in the optimum agro-climatic terms.

During the harvesting campaign, agrarians from the Southern, Central, and Volga Districts informed that in 2017 the average yield figures of most grains and pulses exceeded the last year results. According to market operators, in the Southern and Central Districts the wheat yield figures varied within 4-6 t/ha, barley - 2.5-4 t/ha, and peas - 2.5-3.5 t/ha. At the same time, the Southern District usually demonstrated the maximum values. In the Volga District, many agrarians reported about wheat and barley yield figures within 2.5-3.5 t/ha and 2-3 t/ha, respectively.

"2017 provided a good harvest for our household, but production costs also increased. In order to protect grain areas, we had to increase the number of crop protection products processing for several reasons: first, several products did not work due to low temperatures, and secondly, unfavourable conditions increased the further development of not only weeds, but also diseases, pests. Additional treatment provided good results, the yield figures of wheat and barley exceeded the last year results by 10-20%, and totaled nearly 5.5 t/ha and 3.4 t/ha, respectively," - said an agrarian from Krasnodar Krai.

Agricultural producers in the Ural and Siberian Districts noted that in the current year the average wheat yield totaled 1.7-2.2 t/ha and 1.4-1.8 t/ha respectively, barley - 1.9-2.4 t/ha and 1.6-2.2 t/ha respectively.

The harvesting campaign rates were fairly stable, and there were no significant delays, which developed due to favourable weather conditions. Only in several oblasts of the Central and Volga Districts, rains did not allow to agrarians to come to fields, but there was no any significant downtime of machinery (more than 3-5 days).

Completion of the harvesting campaign of winter and early spring crops in the European part took part in the stipulated date with a little lagging. Also, agrarians of the Ural District almost reached the final stage. To date, agricultural producers of the Siberian District harvested grains throughout nearly 85% of the areas.

 

 

Harvesting campaign of grains and pulses in Russia as of October 5, 2017 *

Regions

Planned areas

Harvested areas, `000 ha

Production, `000 tonnes

Yield, c/ha

2017

% of the harvested areas

2016

2017 +/- to 2016

2017

2016

2017 +/- to 2016

2017

2016

2017 +/- to 2016

Russian Federation

47094.8

42543

90.3

43134.5

-591.5

127581.3

112302.3

15279

30

26

4

Central District

8101.3

7047.6

87

6958.9

88.7

28860.8

23706.1

5154.8

41

34.1

6.9

Northwestern District

331.3

223.3

67.4

304.1

-80.8

670.5

823

-152.5

30

27.1

3

Southern District

8770.3

8454.1

96.4

7738

716.1

35178

30266

4912

41.6

39.1

2.5

North Caucasian District

3139.8

2700.9

86

2620.7

80.2

11213.1

10776

437.1

41.5

41.1

0.4

Volga District

12963.8

12270.5

94.7

12269.9

0.6

30728.1

24681.2

6046.9

25

20.1

4.9

Ural District

3511.1

3240.4

92.3

3367.8

-127.4

6545.5

5740.1

805.4

20.2

17

3.2

Siberian District

9952.5

8370.8

84.1

9635.1

-1264.2

13907.6

15796.2

-1888.6

16.6

16.4

0.2

Far Eastern District

324.7

235.4

72.5

240

-4.6

477.6

513.8

-36.1

20.3

21.4

-1.1

* According to recent reports of the agricultural administrative bodies of the federal subjects of Russia

 

According to market operators, in most Federal Districts the qualitative characteristics of winter and early grains, as well as pulses, meet with the requirements of the State Standards (GOST). In particular, the share of milling wheat is estimated at nearly 60-70% of the general harvest. Also, the major pulses (peas and chickpeas) showed high yield figures, and good qualitative characteristics in the current year.

"The qualitative features of spring spiked grains of the harvest-2017 in our household were at high level, we received nearly 80% of 3-grade and 4-grade wheat. Wheat yield figures reached 3.6-4 t/ha, barley - 2.2-2.9 t/ha, which exceeded the last year results. We achieved such indicators through full compliance of the agri-technological measures and maximizing of crops protection with usage of crop protection products. However, the prices for new crop grains showed that such expenses are not always justified," - commented an agricultural producer from Saratov oblast.

Therefore, despite all difficulties faced by agrarians, the harvest-2017 surpassed all expectations, because all analysts still continue constantly increasing the forecasts of grain production. At the same time, to date agricultural producers have little reasons for optimism, due to the current price situation in most grain and pulse segments, as well as the deficit of conditions for significant price increasing in the nearest future. So, in the reporting period of the current season in the Volga District bid prices for 3-, 4-grade and feed wheat varied within 7`000-9`000 RUR/t, 5`600-7`600 RUR/t and 4`400-7`000 RUR/t respectively, down 2`000 RUR/t compared with the same period last MY. In September 2017, in the segment of feed barley in the reporting Federal District the bid prices varied within the range of 5`000-7`400 RUR/t CPT, down nearly 1`700 RUR/t compared with the same period in the season-2016/17. Also, the peas market was characterized with a significant price reduction compared with last season, to 7`000-9`800 RUR/t CPT (in the Volga District), against 14`000-17`900 RUR/t under the same terms in 2016.

So, there is the question, whether it is too expensive price for the production of such record harvests? The market hopes for a significant increase of grain exports which will assist to support the prices and create conditions for development of further records, and active development of the agricultural sector in Russia.

 

Anna Kochuhova, Alexandrina Ovdienko, APK-Inform Agency

 

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