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Southern Russia starts harvest of new barley crop with high yields

June 21 (Reuters) - Russia's southern region of Krasnodar, one of the main parts of the country's breadbasket, has started harvesting new crop of winter barley with higher yields than a year ago, the regional administration said in a statement on Tuesday.

Russia is the world's largest wheat exporter and a major producer of barley. The country is expected to harvest a large grain crop and possibly a record high wheat crop this summer.

The harvesting of the new wheat crop will start in a week, officials at the Krasnodar region added in the statement.

The first tests show that yields of the new barley crop are up 119% from a year ago and so far total 7.38 tonnes per hectare, the officials said, adding that 99% of sowings were in good or satisfactory condition at the start of harvesting.

Farmers in the Krasnodar region will be harvesting grains from 1.9 million hectares this summer, including 1.6 million hectares of winter wheat and 174,000 hectares of winter barley.

(Reporting by Reuters. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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