Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Cool weather may delay start of Black Sea harvest, only one way to find out for sure

Unusually cooler weather in Russia and Ukraine risks delaying wheat and barley harvest, report Bloomberg today.

Twitter has been hot on the subject this morning asking if it’s likely, if so by how much and what are the implications?

My Black Sea farming contacts have consistently been telling me all season that it’s on the cooler side this year which we have taken to mean better conditions for wheat growth and improved yield prospects as it prefers cooler conditions.

It’s no coincidence the wheat yield record has bounced between the UK and NZ over the last four decades (the record currently resides with a NZ farmer at 16.79mt/ha) and that Irish wheat yields are on average the highest in the world, driven by rainfall, mild winters and long cool summers that help fill grain.

Cooler conditions and plenty of moisture will keep the Black Sea crop growing for longer particularly in southern regions where plants normally die off in the heat rather than ripen, which will help yield prospects there.

We start our Black Sea Crop Tour in southern Russia this coming Monday and will travel north through the Russian grain belt before crossing the border and finishing in southern Ukraine, by the end of which we should have some idea on how delayed the cereal harvest might or might not be.

Sign up to receive results which we post on a Twitter account during the tour and is only open to subscribers, and the follow-up written report emailed out soon after we finish field inspections.

Or you could go and check it out for yourself but as we only charge £350 for the (season long) service your likely to spend that on breakfast and duty-free before you’ve even taken off.

(Email for subscription details)