Previously, a meeting was held at the Russian Ministry of Agriculture to plan the structure of sown areas for the 2023 harvest. “An important task is to ensure the balance of supply in the agricultural market and the maximum profitability of crop production.” , said the department of agriculture.
buckwheat and rice
The rice and buckwheat area is planned a little more than this year and is enough to meet all needs, the Ministry of Agriculture believes.
As told to RG at the Institute for Agricultural Market Studies (IKAR), the area planted with buckwheat in 2018-2021 varied between 811-1045 thousand hectares. In 2022 they have grown, according to preliminary data, to more than 1.1 million hectares. At the same time, the largest harvests of buckwheat were recorded in 2017 – 1.69 million hectares.
As a result, in the 2017/18 agricultural season there was an overproduction of buckwheat and a sharp drop in prices. “The optimum, from our point of view, would be a slight increase in crops to 1.2-1.3 million hectares,” Irina Glazunova, deputy general director of IKAR, told RG.
Buckwheat is the most “popular” cereal. Any reduction, even a small one, in your production can cause an unpredictable increase in demand and prices. Therefore, it is necessary to have enough volumes “in reserve”, added Irina Glazunova.
According to IKAR, rice crops in the previous four years amounted to 182-197 thousand hectares. In 2022, it was planned to expand them. However, the accident at the Fedorovsky hydroelectric complex in the Krasnodar Territory, the largest producer of this crop, led to its reduction. Preliminary – up to 175 thousand hectares. Rice farmers plan to increase rice planting next year.
In recent years, the largest areas planted in 2016 – 208 thousand hectares. Russian rice is in demand not only in the domestic market, but also abroad. Buyers include Turkey, Mongolia, Belgium, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Azerbaijan, Jordan and other countries. According to IKAR, in 2019 291 thousand tons of rice were exported from the country, in 2020 – 146, in 2021 – 134. Exports decreased due to the pandemic. In 2022, the numbers did not increase due to the introduction of export restrictions.
Growth of legume exports
Meanwhile, Russia can strengthen its position in the world market for pulses. The Ministry of Agriculture, together with the exporters, plans to develop a program for the export of barley, peas and other crops. The area dedicated to legumes, mainly peas, will increase by at least 125,000 hectares. According to experts, the world market for these crops is quite large, and Russia can strengthen its position in it, notes the Ministry of Agriculture.
According to the Federal Center for Export Development (Agroexport), Russian exporters delivered $693 million worth of legume crops to foreign markets last year, which is 97 percent more than in 2020. In physical terms, the volume of shipments reached a historical record of 1.6 million tons. This is 38 percent more than in 2020.
Turkey has occupied the first place among the buyers of pulses. The supply of peas, lentils and chickpeas increased to 414,000 tons. In second place is Pakistan, which imported 239,000 tons of pulses from Russia. No third – Bangladesh, which increased its purchases of peas. Also among the top 5 buyers of Russian pulses last year were Italy and Latvia. The record exports are associated with a large harvest in Russia in 2021, as well as reduced production in a number of major exporting countries due to weather disasters.
Maintain a balance of crops.
In general, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, the total area sown next year will increase by about 50,000 hectares and will exceed 82 million hectares. Tentatively, the area planted with cereals and legumes will be 47.6 million hectares, 136 thousand more than this year. This indicator will provide the necessary level of food security. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, the gross harvest at the level of 125-127 million tons of cereals will allow maintaining the balance of interests of producers, consumers and exporters of cereals.
In order to maintain the stability of the crop rotation, it is also necessary to increase the area planted with spring barley by 400,000 hectares. In addition, growth is announced for sugar beets and soybeans for next year. Sunflower crops need at least 9.8 million hectares and oilseed flax at least 2.2 million hectares, which is more than the original plan. An increase in the area cultivated with vegetables and potatoes in the organized sector is also forecast; a federal project will begin next year.
At the same time, the department sees the need to reduce the area planted with wheat by almost half a million hectares. This is necessary to maintain price balance and stabilize the domestic market in the interests of all participants, as well as to achieve this year’s record harvest. The wheat target for next year is 80-85 million tons.