Ukrainian corn crop forecast to grow by 17%

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

Aerial view of Odessa Port, Ukraine © GettyImages/graphixel
Aerial view of Odessa Port, Ukraine © GettyImages/graphixel

Related tags Ukraine Black Sea Grain Initiative Corn

A recent USDA attaché report sees improved grain production in Ukraine over the next 12 months, with volumes set to exceed the previous year, particularly for corn.

The corn crop is currently being harvested and is forecast to hit around 30.7Mt for MY 2023/24, a 17% increase compared to last year.

Ukraine also has higher-than-normal beginning stocks for corn and wheat, reads the report​.

Logistics remain a challenge

Logistics remain a challenge with grain exports this season down 30% from last year. Following Russia’s unilateral withdrawal from the Black Sea Grain Initiative (BSGI) in July, it is more difficult for Ukraine’s grains to reach global markets.

Though expansion of alternative export routes is ongoing. 

And yesterday, Ukrainian deputy prime minister, Oleksandr Kubrakov, denied reports by Ukrainian and British firms of a temporary shutdown of alternative export routes amid fear of mines and war planes. "The information regarding the cancellation or unscheduled stoppage of the temporary Ukrainian corridor for the movement of civilian vessels from and to the ports of the Big Odesa (region) is false," he said on X, formerly Twitter.

After Russia exited the UN-brokered grain export deal this summer, nearly all exports through ports migrated to those on the Danube River. 

The share of agricultural exports via trucks and rail cars has been consistently between 20-30% of total export volume, according to the USDA data.

Ukraine has been actively working to enhance its export and trans-shipment capacities, including attempting to boost the Port of Constanta's trans-shipping capabilities, which would subsequently allow increased export traffic down the Danube River and out the Black Sea, rerouting some grain traffic to Lithuanian ports and ships resuming the use of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports beginning last month and continuing into October. 

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