Created: 3/1/1970

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Recent Developments In Soviet Agriculture A. Recent Trends in Production

1. In thegricultural production vas narkedercent0 andercent the following year. esult, afterecord high level of outputarm output9 dropped to nearly the level of outputnder capita basis, it registered an absolute decline (see. Crop productionirst Increasedercent then fell

9 percent. The increase in total crop production8 was due mainly

umper grain harvestillion metric tons, ranking second only

to the record crop of lliO million tonH harvested6 (see Tablo 3)

Increases in yields per acre for most crops were promoted by relatively

favorable weather, improvements in tillage practices, the use of better plant

varieties,omewhat larger supply of soil additives (fertilizer and overall

lime). The/decrease in crop production9 included smaller

harvests of grain, potatoes, sugar beets, cotton, and fruits and vegetables.

Crop raising was marked by generally unfavorable weather conditions which

resulted in above-normal damage to winter grain and other fall-sown crops,

prevented timely spring planting, and seriously compressed the time available

for fall harvesting. The grain cropillion tons was below both the


evel and the average lovol achieved2 millionet

it vas one-third above the near-disasterous grain harvests3his ajsount of grain should permit the USSR to meet current domestic needs for bread supplieso fulfill current export commitments, and to maintain sizeable grain stocks.

3. While livestock production9 was almostpercent above thethis gain occurred In that year, the

* The index of total output of livestock includes changes in inventories of livestock held for investment purposes. As indicated in Tableheremall, increase in total livestock output including changes in inventories.

number of livestock decreased, but output of major livestock products increased moderately (see The lack of progress in increasing the output of ma^or livestock products8 continued Declines in the output of ndercent) more thanoderate increase in the production of eggsercent) and ledlight decrease in overall output of livestock products.* The decline in meat production9 reflected the convergence of several developments that either directly or Indirectly impinged on output of meat, milk, wool, and other livestock products. In addition to the smallerof herds free the previous year, these developments includedoss of livestock during the year due to adverse weathernail decline in availability of feed per head ofossible increase in the incidence of disease, and (h) tho adoptionolicy of expanding depleted herds by foregoing slaughtering imited success could be claimed while the size of private herds continued to decline, the annual declines in overall inventories of livestock registered in the two previous years were arrested. ne percent gain in total value

of livestock inventories reflected a. substantial buildup in hog numbers,

which by tho end8 had dropped someillion (or nearly

ercent) belowith the increase9

of corell!ion head, hog numbersercent5 levels.

This increase, moreover, was nearly nullifiedajor reduction in

inventories of cheepmall decline in cattle numbers. Cattle, sheep,

and goat herds have now declined to the lowest level since the end

The buildup in hog inventoriesetreat from the policy of encouraging

hog raising only on specialized farms. The reduction in shoep flocks

resulted from severe winter weather in the first quarter of the year.

B. Current geveloFr.ents in

I4. When Khrushchev's successors assumed control inb, they were

confronted with near stagnation of agricultural production In the race of

steadily rising demand for farm products. rogram for improving

the state of Soviet agriculture, popularly termed the Bre2hnev Program, was

spelled outlenum of the CPSU in5 and elaborated upon at

the Twenty-Third Party Congress and at another Plenum in the Spring

Includedong list of remedial measuresumber of provisions

for expanding the production base of tho farm sector during the.

These were highlighted by targetsoubling of deliveries to farms

of new machinery and equipment and soli additives (fertilizer and lime) in

n comparision Inajor boost in investment


in land reclamation was scheduled to result ir, an exper.sion of nearlyercent in the stock of Irrigated and drained land

Steps were takeno implement major parts of the Brezhnev Program, but the striking success in increasing farm output6 evidently ledonsiderable weakening of the priority of the farm sector in the allocation of resources. Those parts of the program that did not depend primarily on industrially-produced goods for agriculture -such as plans forf improved cropping practices and forariety of incentives for farcerswere put into effect, while those parts of the program thatharp acceleration in investments and provision of industrially produced materials were permitted to lag far behind the original schedule. An initial spurtn the flow of industrially produced goods to farms was followedy majorfrom the original plan for deliveries of both investment goods (tractors trucks, and agricultural machinery) and industrially produced materials (fertilizer, lubricants, electric power, and the like). Even these new plans have not been met except in the case of fertilizer.

Deliveries of tractors and agricultural machineryere scheduled to be nearly two-thirds above tho deliveries. Butctual deliveries were only slightly more than one-third above the first fourU) of the previous five-year period. Similarly, deliveries of trucksere slightly more than three-fourthsorcent increase was targeted. The shortfall in investment in agricultural machinery and equipment means slower growth in inventories of farm machinery. 6

it Is estimated thut parks of the major types of machinery increased at an average annual rate ofercent. If this tempo continues, the Increase in total inventories of machineryill be less than half that originally planned. For example, the park of tractors was to rise fromillion at the end5illion at the endombines. At current estimated rates of progress, the net additions will beractorsombines or roughlyercont of planned increases.

program calledargo expansion in the useand limeeans of boosting orop yields. Annual deliveriesto agriculture wore to reachillion tonsoublolovel. The new plan also called for the liming of nearlyillion hectares

. _. . _ . * if

* w wa - .

agricultural purposesertilizer deliverieswhich amounted to almostillion tonsxo nearest on schedule. Horoovor, the addition ofillion tons of new fertilizer capacity9 indicated marked progress. Although this addition to capacity was below the plannedillion ton increase, it was more than twice the new capacity added6 and more than throe times that added in6n the past four years, however, lime was applied to only aboutercent of tho total area planned. Much of the blame for this log is officially placod on tho lack of transport and spreading equipment.

tho Brezhnev Procrom, newly irrigated and drained lend wasnearly one-third of the incroaee in gross agricultural productionoutput planned. Although investment in land reclamationhue )irocoedodomowhut brisker pace than othor parts of the

investment program, the total area reclaimed has not yot increased appreciably. Its average quality, however, is now higher. , investment in land amelioration was slightly moreillion rubles, aboutercent of the planned total. But annual gross additions of irrigated and drained land remained at about5 level and cumulatively are only slightly more than one-half of the overall target. Because of this lag and because of stepped-up retirements from use of land previously reclaimed, the total stock of drained and irrigated land has remained largely unchanged.

0- Outlook0

9. Following the decline in agricultural productionhe regime

announced plans forercent increase in gross agricultural output

rash program to expand the agricultural resource base has not

beenet it does not appear that stagnation in output will be

accepted. Although the scheduled allocation of machinery and most other

major inputs0 is at or below the unimpressive rates of growth in

ignificant Increases are planned in the allocation of resources,

such as soil additives, that are directly related to short-run gains in

productivity. Deliveries of mineral fertilizer0 are scheduled to

increase by aboutubstantial increase over theercent

average annual rste of growth in deliveries for the preceeding four

, In addition, the capacity for mineral fertilizer

production is to increaseillion tonsomewhat below


the all time high ofillion^ of capacity ccirinissioned? but

more than twice the average annual increase for

0 plan also calls for the application of

limeillionillion acres) . This amounts to an increase ofercentut does notignificant deviation from the average annual increase of aboutercent6

10. Short-run increases in output are also achievable by encouraging production in the private sector, and there are some indications that this activity is being stimulated. Party leaders have recently called upon local organs to accelerate the sale of young animalsexpecially pigsto private households, to expand sales of grain and other feedstuffs to the private sector and to encourage households to accept grain as in-kindfor work'in collective farms. Efforts are also being made to reverse the policy of specialization on collective and state farms which will enable these enterprises tolow of young stock to individual collective farmers and state farm workers.



Note to Tables on Indexes of Agricultural Output

The indexes shown inre based on the physics! output for cost crops and anleal products, including changes in Inventories of livestock, weighted0 prices. In order toet measure of the physical amounts available for sale and hone consumption, deductions were made for the amounts of grain and potatoes, and milk fed to livestock and for the amounts of grain and potatoes used as seed. The physical ccemiodity series rely in part on the acceptance of official data; In part on independent estimates for selected products (the individualnd in part on estimates that reflect downward adjustments of official claims for other products (oilseeds, meat, and milk). Official data is available for9 production of most commodities, but the output of other products must bo estimated (fruit, fiber flax, tobacco, makhorka, tea, silk, cocoons, and minor oilseeds).

Differences between the figures shown innd those given in US Congress, Joint Zconomlc Committee, 8oviet Economic Performance: re due to the following:

sample of commodities included in the index hasoommodity groups. Additional commodity groups Include: berries, tobacco, makhorka, tea, silk, cocoons, and minor oilseeds.

price weights have been substituted8 price weights

in aggregating the output of farm products expressed in physical terms. 0 prices are the average realized prices rccolved by all producers

(collective and state farrs and individual producers) for output sold through state channels and the collective farm market.

(3) Production data (official or estimated)7 for several commodities have been changed.

ore detailed description of the indexes (sources of data, coverage of commodity sample, methods ofee Joint Economic Committee, New Directions in the Soviet Econocy, Part II-B,pecial Problen: Production Statistics for9

As suggested above, Western analysts generally have agreed that official

Soviet production statistics for seme of the major agricultural commodities

contain considerable exaggeration. As indicated, although most pablicity

has been given to the inflation of statistics on grain, there is also

evidence of exaggeration in output claims for meat, milk, and selected

oilseeds. Official claims are therefore discounted to determine estimates

of meat production. 0tandard discount ofercent

was applied In deriving an estimated series of annual outputs. 7

uring Khrushchev's campaign to "catch up" with the United States

in meat output, higher and varying discounts wore used, reflecting pressures

believed to have been placed on reporting officials at various levels to

fulfill unrealistic goals which ledreater-then -usual degree of

falsification during this period. tandard discount

rate ofercent was applied to official estimates. This reflected collateral


evidence bearing on tho validity of official claims of neat output which did not Suggest the need forarying rate of discount or as high a

rate as for the latter years of the Khrushchev era. owever, the evidence at hand suggestocevhat larger deduction was in order when production was compared It was officially claimed that the combined output of moat by the socialized and private sectors of the economy remained at8 level. eduction in output of industrially processed meat, which constitutes nearlyercent of the total meat output of the socialized sector of the economy, was also announced. To maintain meat output at8eduction in total meat output of the socialised sector would have to be compensated for by an Increase In production of meat by the private sector of the economy, but, based upon the past relationship between the size of privately-owned livestock herds and the production of meat by the private sector, such an increase appears unlikely. In addition, Brezhnev,peech in late November to the Kolkhoz Congress, admitted that per capita consumption of meat9ercent below thatn summary, those indicators of meat output by the socialized sector and by tho private sectorecline in total meat output, in contrast to the official claim that output9 was maintained at3 level. 9 the official claim for meat output is discounted byercent, leadingrop of fcj percent below the estimated level of output

Table :.

USSR: Indexes of Net Agricultriral)






Crop production less adjustments for seed and feed.

b/ Livestock products adjusted for changes in livestock numbers.

Table 2

USSR: Average Annua! Rates ofet Agriculture! Output, Selected/


Annual Average

Averageears b/




The base year for the calculations shown in each line is the year before the stated initial year ofhe average annual rate of increases computed by relating production8 to base

b/ Average annual rates of growth were computed by relating the three-year average for the terminal year (for example, using the average1 as outputimilar three-year average for the basef End year ishree-year average but net agricultural output tor that year only.

- /J? -

Table 3

USSR: Production of The Major/

Million metric tons

grain: b/ Estimated c/ Soviet official

Estimated b/


beets (factory use)


seeds: Estimated d/ Soviet official



/ Soviet official data unless otherwise indicated. / Including pulses.

Estimate of usable grain. Not usable grain ie estimated as the gross output ninus excess moisture, unripe and damaged kernels, weed seeds, nd post-harvost losses incurred in the loading and unloading of grain between ths combine and storage facilities. Entlmatcs of net productionrain haveeduction of between Hi) andercentn the official claims for gross output of grain. 1/ Official data for gross output have been reduced byercent to allow for excess moisture and trash that results when "bunker weight"s measured in tfce harvesting eachlne) is used in determining the size of the harvest.

- /J-

metric tons except as noted.

weight basis, including slaughter fats, edible by-products, poultry, and miscellaneous meats.

data reducedercent to arrive at estimated amount of meat actually produced.

milk fed to calves and pigs.

data reduced0 percent to arrive at estimated amount of milk actually produced.

official data.


U3SR: Livestock "umber* and Production of Jfcjor LivestockO-69

ittle Total Cows





and goats

Major livestock

c .liuctn "/


Official Adjusted cj








Official Adjusted e/


(in billions) tj

(thousand metric tons) gj

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