MINSK, 18 July (BelTA) – Things have been going very well for crops in Belarus this year, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he heard out a report by Mogilev Oblast Governor Anatoly Isachenko in Minsk on 18 July, BelTA has learned.
"How are things out in the fields?" the head of state asked the governor.
Aleksandr Lukashenko noted that he has recently visited Vitebsk Oblast, Mogilev Oblast and Gomel Oblast to see how things were. "I think that Mogilev Oblast, the north of Belarus is lucky to a certain extent. During the plumpness period they had these rains. Yes, there was a windy weather too. There are quite large areas of downed crops. But we grow not only gain crops but also corn, and beets, and other crops, potatoes. In general, things have been very good for crops this ear," the president said.
Nevertheless, there are problems with such crops as rapeseed and cereal crops, albeit small ones, and even less in Mogilev Oblast, he stated. It is important to strictly observe the cultivation technologies of certain crops. "The recent cyclone, with the epicenter in Belarus, naturally affected the crops in those regions that planted crops earlier. Those regions that did not observe the technology, that used fertilizers out of proportion and had crops growing up fast, had a high percentage of downed crops. Those regions that applied fertilizers normally and took good care of crops, have no problems with crops. The cultivation technology is all important, in any place across the coutnry," Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
"But still the situation is good in general. We have learned how to harvest downed crops. But still, what difficulties, do you think, we will face this harvesting campaign?" the president asked.
He stressed that the main thing is the pace, the second is quality: "Do you know how combine operators harvest crops when there is a good harvest? Sometimes they overspeed, which lead to increased losses. Indeed they will harvest grain faster, more than 100 tonne per day. But losses are larger at such speeds. Therefore, the quality of harvesting is the most important issue. Here it is necessary to adjust the salary so that the combine harvester understands that if he harvests downed crops his salary will be appropriate. "
"We will have to apply stringent control over the harvesting process. Control should be on the ground, of course. Harvest is your bread. Governors and local authorities should exercise this control first of all. Everything is there for this," the head of state emphasized.
Aleksandr Lukashenko said that in the near future he also intends to meet with Grodno Oblast Governor Vladimir Karanik and also plans to visit this region as he wants to inspect the situation not only in the east, but also in the west of the country. "We will also discuss how things are going with the harvest. The southern regions have already started harvesting," he said.
The president also touched on winter barley. This crop has recently gotten a new lease on life in the agricultural industry and to which the head of state pays great attention: "I must tell you that winter barley yields more than 50 centners per hectare on average. If we had such an average yield of all crops in the country, thing will be top notch for us. There is a need to plant larger areas to winter barley. Even this year, winter barley is yielding a good harvest. If we could have sown it earlier, we would have removed it a long time ago."
Aleksandr Lukashenko drew attention to certain difficulties with rapeseed harvesting, which are generally observed in all farms in the country. This crop is characterized by tiered maturation. Moreover, rapeseed does not always ripen at the same time even in the same field. As a result, when some places on the field need to be removed, others are still maturing. "Therefore, it is necessary to harvest rapeseed ripe fields, even if 10 plots are ripe, and 15 are not yet there. We must do this, because rapeseed will shed. Rapeseed is ‘gold' for us now, it's a lot of money. Therefore, it is urgent to sort things out on the spot. I am sure that you also have such fields that need to be harvested today," the president said.
Aleksandr Lukashenko once again urged to prepare for intensive work: "Things will move fast. Sowing has been delayed, the growing season cannot be shortened."
As for agricultural work, the head of state drew attention to the second and third grass cutting: "Grass harvest has been very good. We must try to stock as much fodder as we can. Grassy fodder crops should be removed very quickly. Because as soon as grain harvesting time comes there will be a lot of work. In general, this period of the harvesting campaign is very much intensive. It will not be easy," the Belarusian leader said.