SovEcon boosts Russian wheat forecast, but warns of weather risks for new crop

22 March 20242 min reading

SovEcon, a leading Black Sea agricultural markets research firm, has raised its 2024 Russian wheat crop estimate by 0.4 million metric tons (MMT) to 94.0 MMT on overall good weather conditions. In 2023, the country produced 92.8 MMT. The 5-year average is 86.7 MMT.

2023/24 winter was mild and relatively wet once again. SovEcon anticipates that the winter kill area is expected to be below average and the majority of regions have sufficient moisture reserves. This often leads to above-average yields.

 The production of winter wheat is estimated at 68.2 MMT, up from 67.7 MMT in February, following an increase in the pre-harvest area from 16.4 mln ha to 16.6 mln ha.  The spring wheat crop is forecasted at 25.7 MMT, down from 25.9 MMT, with the estimated pre-harvest area reduced to 13.0 mln ha from 13.1 mln ha as some farmers could try to switch from wheat to other crops, first of all, niche ones.

However, SovEcon has raised concerns about the weather conditions for the new crop, noting a recent deterioration in the weather setup in key wheat-growing regions. A lack of precipitation ahead of the critical stage of early plant development is observed, signaling potential challenges ahead.

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