Overview of Ukrainian agriculture – role of grain storage facilities.

The territory of Ukraine is characterized by a flat landscape and a mild continental climate. Soil quality is either good or excellent with up to 50% classified as “chernozems” - the most fertile type of the soil in the world. Arable land bank is about 32,5 min ha with further potential to growth. (Details presented at the pic 1.) The combination of these factors enables active dynamic in agriculture and related segments of economy including but not limited to grain storage facilities and food processing. Rapid development in agrarian business during last decade is due growth global demand and rich soil resources of Ukraine that in combination with the optimal rainfall regime and backbone of post USSR infrastructure provide outstanding returns for farmers and larger producers.

For the last 5 year Ukrainian farmers stately produce more than 60 million tons of grain and other crops among them: wheat, sunflower, corn, rye, barley, millet, buckwheat, oats, peas, and many others. Large scale agro production fuels need for store facilities of sufficient volumes to accommodate harvest..

The stability of the grain market in Ukraine largely depends on the work of grain storage facilities. The elevators in Ukraine are not only place of storage of collected crops, but also means to improve their quality by calibration and additional drying (especially relevant to corn /maize) . Large agro producers usually own silos, smaller farmers' (in Ukraine it means 500-3000 ha) co-operate with local storage facilities. Thanks to the developed networks of silo connected via railway and river passages, huge amounts of grain produced and exported annually. The port elevator is an essential element in the export system.

Interactive map of Elevators of Ukraine

Main objective is to provide grain owners with easy-to-use online tool that can help right silo to work with . Silo themselves can place buy and sell quotes as well as take part in online trading. Additionally interactive map of Ukrainian silo can be used by domestic and even international traders to better understand reputation and capabilities of each and every Ukrainian silo.

Map allows to “slice and dice” by various parameters such as silo types, storage capacity , logistic capacity, region, ability of silo to deal with warehouse receipts , manufacturing standards , food safety standards ( like HACCP ) etc . Also system has details info on logistic connectivity – Later kind of important due to number of logistic issues that may be linked to grain transportation to and from silo. Major roots of Ukrainian grain transportation as follows:

  • Railway ( hoppers ) ;
  • River barges
  • Road transport

Typically, elevators are positioned to meet the needs of several large producers and processors of the area. This eliminates the need for long grain transportation at first lag, however delivering to the deep sea port can be problematic at high season due to shortage of railway carriages .

In contrast to other larger grain producing countries like US and Canada Ukrainian grain often comes to the elevators in rather large batches ( from 1000-10000 MT) and not always straight from the fields but from so called “farmers silo”, it is not always possible to send it further and at that stage quality adjustment may be needed . Therefore most of silo equipped by drying cleaning and fumigating /disinfecting machinery. Short or long-term storage also can be arranged to accommodate logistics