23 Jun 2023 14:46

Russia could harvest more than 26 mln tonnes of main oilseed crops in 2023, 2022 record not to be surpassed - expert

MOSCOW. June 23 (Interfax) - The gross harvest of primary oilseed crops (sunflower, soybeans, rapeseed) could reach more than 26 million tonnes in Russia this year, Kirill Lozovoy, an analyst with the OleoScope agency said in a forecast.

"This forecast is made taking into account the fact that the harvesting campaign will take place in normal mode and the weather will not have a significant impact on the harvest and the development of crops," Lozovoy told Interfax.

"So far, all estimates are very preliminary, but based on the available data on the progress of field work, we can state that this year's harvest will be below the record level of 2022. However, not all crop harvest are expected to decline," the expert said.

Last year, the gross yield of major oilseeds was 26.9 million tonnes, Lozovoy said.

Preliminary estimates for the sunflower harvest are 15.9-16 million tonnes (16.4 million tonnes last year), while the sown area will be slightly smaller than last year - close to 10 million hectares.

"Beyond that, the climate will determine much of what happens, but at the moment the conditions for crop development in the main federal districts can be called favorable, even despite the fact that around the middle of the month the weather was colder than usual," he said. "Since mid-June everything has returned to close to normal, but there are still about two months before the start of the harvest campaign and a lot can change, of course," - Lozovoy said.

At the same time, according to Lozovoy, soybeans may remain the only oilseed crop harvests of which will increase compared to last year. Production will amount to 6.1-6.2 million tonnes (6 million tonnes last year).

"Sowing of soybeans has been fairly stable, and the area under cultivation will set a record. Expansion will take place in the center, the Volga region. In the Far East the pace has slowed down for now, with fieldwork there to be finished by the end of June, but preconditions for an increase in the harvest in this macro-region are still there. Soybeans are in demand due to their high profitability and good demand both on the domestic and foreign markets," the expert said.

Speaking of rapeseed, Lozovoy said that we should expect a decrease in the gross harvest to 4.15-4.2 million tonnes (4.5 million tonnes) amid a decrease in sowing areas as well as yields, in particular due to unfavorable weather in the east of the country, such as in the Altai and Krasnoyarsk Territories, which are the main producing regions.