October 25, 2011


Russia's grain prices fall amid harvest completion



As Russia's harvesting campaign reaches completion, local grain prices decreased again last week, according to analysts Monday (Oct 24).


Average third-grade milling wheat EXW prices declined by RUB75 (US$2.46) to RUB5,850 (US$191.61) per tonne, fourth-grade by RUB100 (US$3.28) to RUB5,650 (US$185.06) and feed wheat by RUB25 (US$0.82) to RUB5,050 (US$165.41) in the European part of Russia, SovEcon agricultural analysts said in a weekly note.


It said milling rye declined by RUB250 (US$8.19) to RUB3,950 (US$129.38) per tonne, feed barley by RUB50 (US$1.64) to RUB5,200 (US$170.32) per tonne and corn by RUB250 (US$8.19) to RUB6,000 (US$196.53).


Russian grain harvesting was 91.6% over by last Tuesday (Oct 18), with 93.4 million tonnes reaped by bunker weight, up from 62.2 million a year ago, when the country was hit by a severe drought.


The Russian Hydrometcentre weather forecasting service said on Monday (Oct 24) weather conditions in the last 10 days of October will favour the harvesting of late spring grains and development of winter grains.


Prices have been also negatively influenced by high costs of transportation of grain by trucks and reports of shortages of railway wagons, SovEcon said.


It said exporters lowered prices including delivery (CPT) to deep water sea ports to RUB7,000-7,200 (US$229.28-235.83) per tonne from RUB7,200 (US$235.83) a week before. Prices at shallow water ports remained at RUB6,300-6,400 (US$206.35-209.63) per tonne.


Some major traders named prices including delivery to the new Black Sea port of Taman, which is under construction, but has started first shipments in August, SovEcon said.


Russia's state grain trader, the United Grain Co (UGC), said last week it will participate in building a grain terminal in Taman, which is expected to reach a capacity of six million tonnes per year in 2017.


FOB Prices for standard quality wheat with 11.5% protein content were practically unchanged last week and were fluctuating in the range of US$230-235 per tonne in Novorossiisk, the Institute for Agricultural Market Studies (IKAR) said in a separate note.


It said FOB prices for standard wheat at shallow water terminals rose slightly to US$205 per tonne from US$200, while corn prices remained stable at US$205.


Under preliminary estimates, Russia exported a new record 11.3 million tonnes of grain, including 9.8 million tonnes of wheat between July 1 and the middle of October, IKAR said.


Previous exports record for the period was set in the 2008/09 crop year, when exports were 7.5 million tonnes, including 6.8 million tonnes of wheat, it said.


Soy prices in southern Russia were stable at RUB13,500-14,000 (US$442.19-458.57), while in the Central Belgorod region they were lower at RUB12,000-12,500 (US$393.06-409.43) per tonne due to abundant harvest, it said.

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