Wheat Crop in Black Sea Region off to Strong Start

December 1, 2017 04:11 PM
 
winter wheat

Favorable weather expected at the start of the Russian winter will help planted wheat, according to Commodity Weather Group.

Currently, no major cold snaps are seen in southern Russia and Ukraine, while snow cover is projected to be adequate, insulating plants against potential damage from any frosts, said David Streit, a forecaster at the group.

“We have a fairly snowy winter for the region, which should help to provide protection as we go deeper into the winter,” he said by email. “Winterkill risks are limited for the beginning of the winter.”

Average monthly temperatures in December are expected to be normal in southern areas and 1 degree Celsius (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) above average in some central regions, the government’s weather center said on its website. Rain and snow are also predicted to be near normal in most of the areas where winter-wheat crops are now shifting to dormancy. 

Most Russian winter wheat is planted from mid-August through mid-October, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Ideal weather conditions helped Russia reach a record harvest this year and indications of good weather for next year may see the country retain its position as top wheat exporter.

Plantings for next year’s harvest are seen near a record high, with crop conditions mostly better than a year ago, according to estimates by the Institute for Agriculture Market Studies, or IKAR. 

Moscow-based consultant SovEcon also expects Russia to collect its second-largest wheat crop of 76.7 million metric tons, assuming that weather is similar to recent years.

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