14 Oct 2009 17:03

Russia rounds off grain harvest, collects over 97 mln tonnes

MOSCOW. Oct 14 (Interfax) - Russia is rounding off the grain harvest and has collected 97.1 million tonnes of grain so far, the Agriculture Ministry said.

Farmers have cleared 40.8 million hectares or 89% of the total grain area to date.

This year's total before drying and cleaning is 14 million tonnes less than this time last year. Yields are down 0.12 tonnes to 2.38 tonnes per hectare.

The wheat harvest is down to 61.2 million tonnes from 65.8 million tonnes in 2008, and the barley harvest to 18.4 million tonnes from 24 million tonnes.

The grain corn harvest is currently 1.8 million tonnes, or 2.1 million tonnes less than a year ago. Yield is 3.52 tonnes/ha, or 0.84 tonnes less. Farmers have cleared 515,000 ha, or 36% of the corn area, which is 384,000 ha less.

Rice has been harvested from 141,000 ha (78%) and the rice harvest so far is 817,000 tonnes (79,000 tonnes more than a year ago) at 5.78 tonnes/ha (1.18 tonnes more).

Grain sunflower has been harvested from 3.4 million hectares (55%), with 4.4 million tonnes of seed collected and yield of 1.29 tonnes/ha or 0.01 tonnes less.

Sugar beet has been harvested from 531,000 ha (65%) and the harvest so far is 15.8 million tonnes (4.3 million tonnes less) at 29.8 tonnes/ha (4.17 tonnes less).

Flax has been harvested from 59,300 ha (86.4%), or 7,800 ha less than a year ago; and soya from 328,000 ha with the harvest so far 424,000 tonnes of beans at 1.29 tonnes/ha (0.24 tonnes more).

Winter grains have been sown on 16.8 million ha, or 1.4 million ha more than this time last year.

The Agriculture Ministry expects this year's gross clean weight harvest to be 90 million-93 million tonnes, down from 108.1 million tonnes in 2008.