November 12, 2014


Russia's winter wheat growers worried by dry condition



Growers of winter wheat in four major growing regions in Russia are worried over dry conditions, which may stunt plant growth.


Soil humidity was last monitored to be less than 10 millimetres in Volgograd, Voronezh and Saratov, all in central Russia, and Rostov in the south, said Anna Strashnaya, head of the department for agrometeorological forecasts in Rosgidromettsentr Rossii. The ideal is at least 25 millimetres (1 inch).


"It's the only concern we now have about winter wheat," Strashnaya said according to a Bloomberg report.


Aside from the four regions, Moscow-based market researcher SovEcon listed three others--Orenburg in the Ural Mountains and Samara and Tambov in central Russia--as being particularly dry.


SovEcon had earlier said dry conditions across European Russia would most likely cut the country's wheat harvest to less than 50 million tonnes in 2015.


Strashnaya said the cold weather eased last week in the black earth areas of Kursk, Tambov, Lipetsk and Belgorod, providing an opportunity for struggling plants to resume growth.


Strashnaya said wheat in those four areas might still develop more strength to survive the winter.

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