The top global sunflowerseed producers are still Ukraine and Russia with both countries achieving a bumper crop in the 2019/20 season, UkroAgroConsult reported on 29 May.

Sunflower oil exports were at all-time highs at 4.5M tonnes in Ukraine – for the September to April period - and 2.1M tonnes for Russia – for September to March.

In the current season, Ukraine and Russia had competed for the Indian and Chinese export markets and had widened their range of export destinations, UkrAgroConsult said.

The global consumption of sunflower oil was forecast to rise 2% in the 2020/21 season to 19.7M tonnes, according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

For sunflower oil imports, the sector shares remained stable, with the figures for India and the EU slightly decreasing in favour of China and other countries.

Sunflower crop prospects for Ukraine and Russia, meanwhile, were now looking more optimistic in view of improved weather.

The planted areas in both countries would exceed official forecasts, UkrAgroConsult said and, even with average yields, the sunflowerseed harvests would be close to record levels. In the case of higher yield figures, they could hit new highs.