Krasnodar, 5 August.
Today our interviewee is Andrei Korobka, Deputy Governor of Krasnodar krai.
Q.: Did such unfavourable weather conditions as high temperatures affect the yield and the quality of the crop this year?
A.: They did indeed. An abrupt rise of temperature at the time of grain formation affected negatively the formation of ears, which was why the crop yield reduced. Many farmers said that when inspecting their fields in June, they had predicted 8 to 10 tons per hectare.
Alas, the weather made adjustments – and such results were not achieved. Nonetheless, we got 6.5 to 8 tons per hectare, which is a decent figure. Such yield resulted from the fact that the amount of rain last spring equalled to the yearly amount in 2020.
Q.: The weather remains quite complicated. What are the forecasts for the harvest of grapes and fruits?
A.: For some cultures, the current weather and the forecast we got from meteorologists would be a real disaster. For others – like grapes or fruit crops – there is no threat. The prospects for grapes are quite good, the more so as we are striving to get a high-quality yield to be turned into really good wine, rather than a bumper crop. As for rice, one of our main cultures, the high temperatures and hot winds will negatively affect its yield.
For maize and soya beans, drought can also be a disaster. In many places, the maize areas suffered during the flowering, and now the cobs are grainless. Our initial plans had been to get over two million tons of maize, but now the forecasts will have to be corrected. Many areas under late varieties will be reclassified for silage. Sunflower is less subject to negative weather impacts, but it is also suffering for a certain extent. Our plans are about one million tons.
Q.: What are the forecasts for grain prices?
A.: We are expecting a significant, about 5 to 10%, rise by the end of the year, that is, in the second half of the autumn. The farmers will need it to achieve efficiency.
We are much concerned about the prices for fertilizers. The cost of the next year’s harvest will significantly differ from this year’s – I think, it will be at least 25–30% more expensive. Russian companies forecast that the prices for bread will go up by 5 to 7%.
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