Sunflower yields increased, but expectations were higher

Crop acreage increased by 12.9%.

As of August 30, 2021, sunflower was threshed from 86.6 thousand hectares, 152.6 thousand tons were harvested.

For comparison: in 2020, by the same date, 316.6 thousand hectares were harvested, and 483.7 thousand hectares were harvested.

Average yield increased by 15%:

2020 — 15.3 c/ha

2021 — 17.6 c/ha.

A month ago, analysts had expected a higher increase in yields, but the drought in the Center, the Middle and Eastern Volga regions corrected the final figures.

This year sunflower has been sown in a record area since 1990: 9.65 million hectares (2020 — 8.48 million hectares).

In general, taking into account the assumption that the yield will be at the average annual values ​​for the last 5 years and taking into account the increase in the area under agricultural crops, we can expect a harvest volume of about 16 million tons (15.1 million tons after completion).

If the yield is not lower than the average for the last three years, then Russia can become a leader in sunflower production, bypassing Ukraine for the first time.

At the same time, analysts point to a drop in sunflower seed exports in 2021.

In 2020, agricultural exports amounted to 1,368.9 thousand tons. Compared to 2019, the increase was almost 91%.

In 2021, from January to June, exports decreased by 97.4% compared to the same dates in 2020: 21.7 thousand tons against 814.6 thousand tons.

The reduction in the supply of sunflower seeds abroad is associated, first of all, with the introduction of restrictive measures:

In 2020, the export duty on crops was 6.5%, but not less than 9.75 EURO per tonne.

Since the beginning of 2021, the duty has increased to 30%, but not less than 165 EURO per ton, and from July 1, 2021 to August 31, 2022, the duty will be 50%, but not less than 320 EURO per tonne.

Restrictive measures were introduced in order to load refining capacities and stop the rise in prices for sunflower oil in the country.

In fact, curbing sunflower seed exports will not reduce the cost of sunflower oil.

The production of sunflower oil is an export-oriented industry: more than 60% of the product produced from sunflower seeds is sold abroad and at world prices.

In 2020, the export of sunflower seeds grew rapidly, because it was more profitable for producers to sell agricultural crops abroad than to domestic processors.

Processors, focusing on high world prices, can buy sunflower seeds at higher prices, close to world prices, from producers.

Export restriction only redistributes marginality, reducing it for producers and increasing it for processors.

But this does not in any way affect the cost of sunflower oil on the Russian domestic market.

Such a measure will reorient exports to the sale of products with higher added value.

But the export of sunflower oil has not bypassed restrictive measures: from September 1, 2021 to August 31, 2022, a «floating» export duty is introduced in Russia.

The size of the duty will be 70% of the difference between the base price ($ 1,000 per tonne) and the indicative price (arithmetic average of market prices per month), reduced by the value of the adjustment coefficient ($ 50 per 1 tonne).