17 Apr 2024 18:01

Ukrainian grain production to drop to 52.4 mln tonnes, oilseed harvest to remain at 21.7 mln tonnes in 2024 - ministry

MOSCOW. April 17 (Interfax) - The Ukrainian Agrarian Policy and Food Ministry has forecast the total production of grains and oilseeds at 74 million tonnes, including 52.4 million tonnes of grains and 21.7 million tonnes of oilseeds, in 2024, Ukrainian media reported.

In early 2023, the gross harvest of grains and oilseeds for 2023 was also forecast nearly 13% lower than in the previous period, at 63.5 million tonnes, but weather led to an increase of the harvest, Ukrainian media said citing a statement on the Ukrainian Agrarian Policy and Food Ministry's website. Therefore, the total production reached about 82 million tonnes, including over 60 million tonnes of grains and about 22 million tonnes of oilseeds, in 2023, it said.

"The forecasts of gross harvests are preliminary and will be adjusted depending on circumstances, primarily, the weather," the statement said.

Farmers are forecast to harvest 19.2 million tonnes of wheat (22.2 million tonnes in 2023), 4.9 million tonnes of barley (5.7 million tonnes in 2023), and 26.7 million tonnes of corn (30.5 million tonnes in 2023) in 2024, the ministry said.

Soybean harvest is expected to grow to 5.2 million tonnes in 2024 (4.7 million tonnes in 2023). Sunflower production is forecast at 12.4 million tonnes (12.9 million tonnes in 2023) and rapeseed production at 4.1 million tonnes (4.7 million tonnes in 2023).

Crop areas of grains and legumes are forecast at 10.6 million hectares, which is 395,000 hectares less than in 2023. These include 4.3 million hectares of winter wheat (down 300,000 hectares from 2023), spring wheat 200,000 hectares (up 200 hectares), and winter barley 470,000 hectares (down 150,000 hectares). The spring barley crop areas are forecast at 940,000 hectares (up 60,000 hectares) and corn 3.9 millon hectares (down 62,000 hectares).

Crop areas of soybeans are increasing, with an area of 2.2 million hectares expected to be planted in 2024, which is almost 400,000 more than in 2023.

Crop areas of sunflower will be almost the same as in 2023, 5.3 million hectares, and rapeseed 1.5 million hectares, which is 100,000 hectares less than in 2023.

A poll regarding farmers' preparations for the spring sowing season conducted by the State Agrarian Register showed that 70% of respondents planned to increase crop areas of soybeans by an average of 21% compared to 2023.

According to the poll, crop areas of legumes will grow 11% and crop areas of spring barley will grow 7%.

Crop areas of spring rapeseed are expected to grow 24%, alongside a 17% increase in crop area of sugar beet. Crop areas of corn are forecast to fall 9%. Crop areas of sunflower may decrease as well.

Earlier, the Agrarian Policy and Food Ministry said that spring crops areas may decrease 500,000 hectares, or 3.7%, in 2024, compared to 2023.