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Grain Harvest to Increase

Russia, one of the world's top wheat exporters, is expected to increase its 2013 winter grain harvest by 32 percent, year-on-year, giving it some room to maneuver should domestic or export demand fluctuate.

The country is expected to harvest 38.6 million tons of winter grain next year with an expected average yield of 2.7 tons per hectare, the same as the last five years, the Agriculture Ministry said on Wednesday.

Russia, historically the world's third-largest wheat exporter, was hit by unfavorable weather during winter and by drought in spring this year, severely depleting grain stocks, sending domestic wheat prices to record highs and raising fears of a spring deficit.

In 2012, Russia's winter grain crop only reached 29.2 million tons compared with 39.5 million tons the year before, a spokesman for the ministry told Reuters.

(Reuters)

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