Russia’s Grain Stocks Fall by 30% to 29.7 Million Tons

Russia, the third-biggest wheat exporter last season, had 29.7 million metric tons of grain stockpiles as of Dec. 1, down 30 percent from 42.3 million tons a year earlier, the Federal State Statistics Service said.

The figure includes big agricultural producers that held 16.8 million tons, down from 25.3 million tons a year earlier, and procurement and milling companies with 12.9 million tons, down from 17 million tons, the service, known as Rosstat, said today in an e-mailed statement.

Procurement firms and millers had about 8.6 million tons of wheat stocks, of which 7 million tons was of milling quality, Rosstat said. That’s down from about 12.5 million tons of the grain, including 9.8 million tons of milling wheat, a year earlier.

Most of the stocks, about 7.9 million tons, were in the Central federal district, which was 6.3 percent less than a year earlier, according to the statistics service. About 7 million tons were in Volga, or almost 35 percent less than a year earlier. Inventories in the Southern federal district fell about 38 percent to 4.7 million tons. The North-Caucasus federal district had about 1.7 million tons, a decline of about 53 percent. The Southern and North-Caucasus districts are the closest to Russia’s main export routes.

Rosstat’s figures don’t include small, private farms or household reserves.

Wheat for March delivery was down 0.4 percent today at $8.045 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade. The grain advanced 23 percent this year.

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