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Russian winter wheat sowing accelerates after rain, Sovecon says

MOSCOW, Oct 3 (Reuters) - Farmers in Russia have accelerated winter wheat sowing after recent rain eased dry soil conditions in some regions, the Russia-focused Sovecon consultancy said on Monday.

Winter grains sowing in Russia, the world's largest wheat exporter, has been delayed this autumn by dry weather and then by heavy rains in the central and southern regions.

"The weather set-up has improved substantially for winter wheat during the last two weeks," Sovecon said.

Farmers in Russia have sown winter grains on 9.4 million hectares compared with 10.7 million hectares around the same date a year ago, Sovecon said.

The year-on-year lag has decreased from the previous week's 1.5 million hectares, the consultancy added.

Winter wheat, sown in autumn for harvesting in summer, typically accounts for 70% of Russia's crop, brings a higher yield than spring varieties and is less vulnerable to weather.

Recent rains boosted moisture for winter grains in regions that were too dry until mid-September, Sovecon said.

Rain is forecast in Russia's southern and central regions this week while the Volga region is expected to be dry. (Reporting by Polina Devitt Editing by David Goodman)

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