Private estimates peg Russian grain output much bigger than official estimates

The coy old Ruskies are at it again. Not content with snatching foreign privinces evidence is emerging that their 2008 grain crop is going to be much bigger than the official estimate of 85MMT.

According to Nicholas Demianov, the head of marketing department of International Grain Company, the company recently renewed it's forecasts for the grain crop in Russia and increased it to 98 mln tonnes. Add to that nearly 9.3 mln tonnes of wheat, barley and oats that remained from last year crop and we have alarge exportable surplus on out hands here.

Grains export will total 17.5-18 mln tonnes of wheat and 2.5-3 mln tonnes of barley according to Demianov. The wheat export figure is substantially higher than the official estimate of 14-15 mln tonnes. In the 2007 marketing year Russia exported 12.75 mln tonnes of grain.