As the government of Serbia decided to ban the export of flour, wheat, corn and oil, the Mill Industry Association, Zitounija, spoke against the measure. In total, Serbia planted wheat on an estimated area of 600,000 Ha last year and its wheat production is around a record high of 3.4 million metric tons (MMT), 26% more than in the previous year. Its own consumption is around 1.8MMT, meaning around 1.7MMT of wheat is the surplus available for export, according to USDA data. This would all go to waste with the ban going into effect as soon as the announcement was made. In this context, the president of the Association of the Mill Industry “Zitounija”, Zdravko Sajatovic, demanded the ban to be immediately revoked.
He added that flour buyers learned about the ban in advance and rushed to purchase wheat before it came into force, causing “chaos” at the mills, with trucks crowding to load, according to Ekapija news outlet reports. He was also quoted pointing out that a new harvest is due in summer, with no one to buy it, in the current scenario.