Ukraine Oilseed Output Seen at Record by Oil World on Soybeans

Ukraine’s next oilseed harvest may be its largest on record after fields recovered from drought last year and farmers expanded soybean acreage, Oil World said.

Larger soybean and rapeseed crops may push total oilseed production to 13.4 million to 14.4 million metric tons in the 2013-14 season, up from 12.71 million tons a year earlier, the Hamburg-based researcher said today in an e-mailed report. Soybean area may reach a high of as much as 1.8 million hectares (4.4 million acres), allowing for production of as much as 3 million tons, up from 2.4 million tons a year earlier. Planting of the oilseed in Ukraine has doubled in the past seven years, it said.

“If our projections materialize, Ukraine is going to be an even more important supplier of oilseeds and products to the world market next season,” Oil World said. Forecasts “will be subject to revision depending on the weather in coming weeks and months.”

Ukraine’s rapeseed output may be as large as 2 million tons, up from 1.3 million tons a year earlier, Oil World said. The sunflower seed harvest may be 8.8 million to 9.4 million tons, compared with 9 million tons a year earlier. The country is the world’s largest producer of sunflower seed and is the largest shipper of rapeseed to the European Union. It’s the Northern Hemisphere’s third-largest exporter of soybeans, after the U.S. and Canada, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

More than 70 percent of Ukraine’s early spring grain planting is complete, with 2.08 million hectares sown as of April 18, mostly with barley, Oil World said, citing the country’s Agriculture Ministry. Most winter-grain crops escaped damage from cold weather this season, which will limit the expansion of oilseed acres this spring, it said.

“Gradual warming in Ukraine this week will be supportive for the spring planting campaign, allowing soils to dry after the recent above-normal rain and snowfall and fieldwork to accelerate,” Oil World said. “This primarily refers to the northern and western parts of Ukraine, where spring plantings have not yet started in earnest.”