Ukrainian farmers have planted nearly 4.5 million hectares of winter crops, the Agriculture Ministry said on Oct. 17.
However, the volume of winter crops is expected to drop by 20% compared to last year as farmers lack financial resources, MP Dmytro Solomchuk told Ukrinform.
So far, farmers have sown 3,018,000 hectares of wheat, 260,000 hectares of barley, 63,000 hectares of rye, and 1,124,000 hectares of winter rapeseed.
Agricultural workers planted 760,000 hectares in the past week.
Solomchuk noted that the decrease in winter crops will result in less bread produced next season and stressed that farmers need urgent solutions.
“Loans are very good for the agricultural sector, but our agricultural sector is already heavily indebted by more than Hr 100 billion ($2.7 billion), and these are already some big risks,” the MP said.
He suggested introducing a “Grain of Ukraine” fund and issuing bonds to purchase 10 million metric tons of wheat from farmers at a fixed price to store in private certified grain elevators.
The plan would then allow farmers to buy back the wheat at this fixed price after having paid to store the grain in the elevators.
Solomchuk believes the decision will allow farmers to receive funds to pay shares and cover expenses related to the fall harvest and sowing campaigns, as well as equipment repairs and the purchase of fertilizers and seeds.