More than 1M tonnes of grains and oilseeds stranded on blocked ships in Ukrainian ports may be at risk of spoilage, World Grain reported Ukraine’s farm minister Mykoa Solskyi as telling local media.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on 24 February, shipments at Ukrainian ports had been blocked leaving only rail routes into Eastern Europe as viable options for grain and oilseed exporters, according to the 18 April report.

Ukraine typically exports up to 6M tonnes/month of grains and oilseeds but only shipped about 200,000 tonnes in March.

“It (the cargo) is not unloaded, and is still on vessels,” Solskyi told the Ukravinska Pravada newspaper. “There are currently 57 vessels with 1.25M tonnes of grain and oilseeds. As for the retention period, I think that even the captains themselves in most cases do not know if there are any problems with this. They certainly did not plan to keep this grain on the ships for a long time.”

Ukraine is the world’s top exporter of sunflowerseed oil and is among the top five exporters of wheat and corn.