Moscow - Russia's gross grain forecast will range from 75 million tonnes to 95 million tonnes in 2013, Igor Pavensky, a department head at CJSC Rusagrotrans, forecasts.
“With moderately favorable weather conditions the harvest could be at least around 83 million tonnes, with good weather – 95 million tonnes and more and with poor weather the harvest could be 75 million tonnes,” Pavensky told Interfax.
However, “it is still very early to draw conclusions about the harvest,” he added.
The winter cereals crop area (without green fodder winter crops) will probably be around 16.4 million hectares, which is almost 700,000 hectares more than in 2011 for the 2012 harvest. This was the crop area available for the record 2008 harvest, when official figures put the harvest at 108.2 million tonnes of grain and experts said around 104 million tonnes was harvested. The amount of crops ruined by frost was below average at the time – 900,000 hectares, compared to 1.7 million in 2012.
The spring crop area in 2013 could increase by 1 million hectares from 2012 to 31.4 million hectares. This is due to the high grain prices seen this year, he said.
The Russian Agriculture Ministry plans to make its first gross grain harvest forecast for 2013 at the start of next year. The forecast for 2012 is 71.7 million tonnes, compared to 94.2 million tonnes in 2011.