Russia Latest

10/08/12 -- The Russian Ministry of Agriculture report grain harvesting at 38.1% complete, producing a crop of 37.1 MMT so far.

The average yield was to date is said to be 2.17 MT/ha compared to 3.00 MT/ha last year, a reduction of 28%.

Of that total 25 MMT of wheat has been harvested so far with an average yield of 2.32 MT/ha versus 3.28 MT/ha last year at this time, which is 29% down on a year ago.

Russia planted about 2 million hectares (4.9 million acres) less wheat this year than in 2010, when yields averaged 1.91 MT/ha, according to SovEcon.

If we were to use a harvested area of 2 million hectares less than in 2010, and a final yield figure of 2.32 MT/ha, then we'd end up with a total wheat harvest of 45.8 MMT. However, it's the normally more productive south of the country where the harvest is well advanced, yields normally drop significantly as harvesting progresses into the Urals and Siberia.

Either way, Russian wheat output this year looks set to end up well below the USDA's 49 MMT July estimate.

Scary footnote: final wheat yields in 2011 came in at 2.26 MT/ha - which is over a tonne/ha, or 31%, lower than the 3.28 MT/ha average yield seen at the end of the first week of August.