Up to 800,000 hectares of Ukrainian winter grain crops, were destroyed by severe weather and may have to be reseeded this spring, reported the representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture.
"Drought in autumn and a freezing winter have damaged crops in the Crimea, Sumy, Chernihiv and Kherson regions," Tetyana Adamenko, head of the state weather forecasting centre's agriculture department, reported.
"Two thirds of the crops killed were winter barley and one third is winter wheat," she said. Winter wheat accounts for about 95% of Ukraine's total wheat planting area. A senior agriculture ministry official said last week that no more than 400,000 hectares of winter grain crops, or up to 5% of the sown area, were likely to be reseeded this spring against 1.5 million hectares in 2012.
Ukraine sowed a total of 8.1 million hectares of winter grains, mostly winter wheat, for the 2013 harvest or almost the same acreage as a year earlier. Ukraine could harvest 6.69 million hectares of winter wheat and 206,000 hectares of spring wheat this year, according to agriculture ministry data. The ministry also said that it expected a decrease in the 2013 spring barley area to 2.29 million hectares from 2.73 million hectares a year earlier. It said Ukraine was likely to reduce the area sown for maize to 4.46 million hectares this year from 4.72 million hectares in 2012.