MINSK, 23 July (BelTA) – Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko praised the technical potential of the Belarusian agricultural industry at a government meeting held on 23 July to discuss the harvest campaign in 2021, BelTA has learned.
According to the head of state, the harvest campaign is on his radar, he is keeping an eye on the economic and weather conditions. “I am still thinking that previously (yesterday we harvested the first million tonnes of grain, today the harvest will reach 1.2-1.3 million tonnes) it took us more than two weeks to harvest the first, second and third million tonnes of grain. And now the harvest campaign is not even in full swing yet, but we have already harvested 1 million tonnes. It means that our agricultural industry has a huge technical potential,” the Belarusian leader stressed.
However, he mentioned certain issues. “The main goal of the today's meeting is to unveil these issues and to make decisions,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
Vice Premier Aleksandr Subbotin reported at the meeting that they will have to gather the harvest of grain, leguminous crops with corn and rape from the area of 2.5 million hectares. “When we were planning the seeding of grain, we focused on more cost-effective crops. The seeding of wheat was increased on the area of 26,000 hectares, the seeding of winter barley – on the area of 10,000 hectares (up 63% from the previous year). We are going step by step, we try Belarusian crop varieties, apply technologies and technological regimes,” the vice premier said. In his words, the at present winter grains account for 59% since last year the yield of winter crops was 28% higher than that of spring-planted crops in all regions on average. “In 2020, the yield of winter barley was almost 60% higher than the yield of spring-planted barley,” Aleksandr Subbotin said.
Speaking about the weather conditions this year, he said: “Because of the late spring the mass seeding of crops started 18 days later, but we managed to mobilize forces, speed up and finish the works on time. There was a lot of precipitation in May – 167% of the norm against the backdrop of low temperatures.” As a result, grain and permanent grasses ripened 5-6 days later. “July heat also had a negative impact on the formation of grain. The temperatures were record-high for our region,” the vice premier added.
According to the Agriculture and Food Ministry, the harvest of grain and leguminous crops was gathered from the area of almost 308,000 hectares (or 14.4% of the total area under crops). The harvest of gran has already reached 1.036 million tonnes, although as of the same date of the previous year the harvest made up only 650,000 tonnes.