Poor weather could hurt Ukraine's late sown winter crops: scientists

KIEV (Reuters) - Expected adverse weather across Ukraine may significantly damage winter grain crops, especially those that were sown late, consultancy APK-Inform quoted Ukrainian agricultural scientists as saying on Friday.

A dry autumn prompted farmers to delay winter grain sowing in the hope that favourable winter weather would allow crops to grow and survive.

“Taking into account possible weather prospects... as well as the condition of winter grain crops and rapeseed plants... their further passing through winter can be quite complicated,” National Academy of Agrarian Sciences of Ukraine said.

It said that crop sown late had a reduced frost resistance and any sharp fall in temperature could damage them.

“The most threatening situation is with winter barley and rapeseed, as well as with winter wheat crops, which were sown in extremely late terms, namely in the second half of October,” scientists said.

Ukraine sowed a total of 7.6 million hectares of winter grain crop for the 2020 grain harvest, up 0.2% from a year earlier.

Ukraine’s 2019 grain harvest could reach a record 74 million tonnes versus 70 million tonnes in 2018.

Reporting by Pavel Polityuk; editing by Jason Neely