The weather remains favorable for the new Russian wheat crop. In recent weeks almost all key regions received 100-150% of normal rains boosting the moisture reserves during the important period of the season.
At the same time rains were not excessive. As of May, 14 4.4 mln ha of spring wheat were planted which is 91% more than a year ago and close to average.
There were some issues with winter wheat in Volga Valley region (#3 wheat producer) but according both to local farmers and satellite images crop conditions are improving.
With more rains expected during the rest of May we remain optimistic about the new Russian wheat crop. In early May wheat production in Russia was estimated at 83.4 mmt (inc. Crimea which is expected to harvest 0.7-0.8 mmt).
The latest WASDE estimate of 77 mmt (ex. Crimea) looks extremely conservative. The yield forecast of 2.91 mt/ha (2.72 mt/ha in 2018 which was a relatively bad weather year; 3.11 mt/ha in 2017 which was a good year) doesn’t seem to reflect good current and past weather conditions.
Russia: spring wheat planted area as of mid-May, 1,000 ha
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