SovEcon: Russian and global grain market news – February 20, 2024

Daily news and market insights from a leading firm focused on the Black Sea grain markets research

On Monday, the May contract for French wheat dropped to a 2020 low of €194.25/mt, closing at €194.75/mt ($210/mt; -1.8% compared to Friday). Trading on the Chicago exchange did not occur due to Presidents’ Day.

Polish farmers are continuing their protests against the import of Ukrainian grain into the country, currently blocking the border between Ukraine and Poland. In response, Ukrainian authorities have threatened to restrict imports of Polish agricultural products, though experts doubt such a measure would significantly affect Poland.

From February 1 to 19, Ukraine exported 3.2 MMT of grain, compared to 3.3 MMT the previous year, as reported by the country’s Ministry of Agrarian Policy. The ministry estimates season-to-date exports at 27.0 MMT, down from 30.0 MMT over the same period in 2022/23.

On Sunday and Monday, Houthi forces attacked two ships passing through the Suez Canal. The first ship, transporting grain from Argentina to Yemen, sustained no significant damage; the second vessel, carrying an undisclosed cargo, was seriously damaged, leading to the evacuation of its crew.

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