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IKAR Cuts Its Forecast For Russia’s 2021 Wheat Crop

Russian agriculture consultancy IKAR said it had cut its forecast for Russia’s 2021 wheat crop to 74-75 million tonnes due to lower production in several regions.

Russia is the world’s largest exporter of wheat, supplying it to Africa and the Middle East. Its farmers are harvesting the 2021 crop with lower yields than a year ago due to dry weather.

“The reasons are clear: smaller crop in the Central, Volga and Urals regions. However, high level of uncertainty still remains,” Dmitry Rylko, the head of IKAR, said in a note.

In August, IKAR expected the wheat crop at 77 million tonnes. The forecast was downgraded from that level sometime ago but released to the media on Thursday, Rylko said.

IKAR currently expects Russia’s 2021 grain crop at 117.5-120 million tonnes, including 17.5-18 million tonnes of barley and 14-14.5 million tonnes of maize (corn), the consultancy added.

Russia harvested 85.9 million tonnes of wheat in 2020.

IKAR also told a regional conference in Russia that the country’s 2021/22 grain exports are expected at 39.5-40.5 million tonnes, including 31-31.5 million tonnes of wheat, the Interfax news agency quoted it as saying.

The 2021/22 marketing year started on July 1.

The estimate of wheat exports includes Russian supplies to drought-hit Kazakhstan, which shares a free customs border with Russia, of around 2.2 million tonnes, Interfax quoted IKAR as saying.

IKAR also said, according to Interfax, that it saw government proceeds from a wheat export tax, launched in June, at $430 million so far.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Polina Devitt Editing by David Evans and Mark Potter)

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