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Regional aspect of food provision in Russia.


by Vinogradov Vladimir Nikolayevich

President of the Group of Companies “Vinogradov”, Moscow, Russia.

Виноградов Владимир Николаевич,

докторант, президент группы компаний «Виноградов», г. Москва.


The food provision problem is one of the most important components of food security in our country. For the Russian realities (when the agricultural production is conducted (transacted) only on 12-13 % of all territory of the country) it is actual to consider the food production and supply questions of population in regional aspect. Thus it is important to underline the irregularity of these processes among the territory of the country: 14 regions give more than 40 % of gross production of agrarian sector (the Moscow, the Volgograd, the Voronezh, the Novosibirsk, the Orenburg and the Saratov regions, the Krasnodar, the Krasnoyarsk, the Stavropol territories, the republic of Tatarstan and Bashkortostan). 12 regions produce half of grain crops, 4 regions - more than half of sunflower crops and sugar-beet. The production of potatoes and stock-raising production is more even distributed all over the territory of the country. Thus, if one takes a self-reliance of a region’s certain product as a correlation of  consumed and produced amount, this correlation will be more than 1  in 63 regions in potatoes , in 62 – in meat products, in 45– in dairy products. That means that more than half of all Russian regions produce sufficient amount for own consumption in all named products. But only 24 regions are enough self-sufficient in vegetables. 

Interregional trade, effective arbitration, stable job of an industrial infrastructure is very important for steadfast supply of the population by food stuffs all over the country. Moreover, as the zones differentiated purchasing prices were cancelled, it would be possible to suppose, that with the beginning of the liberal reforms the specialization of regions in manufacture of agricultural production will increase. However, let us analyze the situation which has developed during  years of reforms. During reforms the tendency of regions to self-maintenance with the basic crops and especially grain, became appreciable. Firstly, the main reasons of deconcentration became the  tendency of manufacturers to produce the most profitable cultures. Secondly, as interregional trading barriers had appeared it pushed regions to self-sufficiency, to provide the guaranteed amount of provision.

Today there are some essential region differentiation in productivity of laborand efficiency of agro-industrial manufacture. But it is important to level such distinctions in regions with similar agro-climatic and soil conditions. For example, during last years corn crop has made 19-23 centners/hectares in Moscow region, and - 14 centners/hectares in neighboring Kaluga region with more favorable environment.

Relative prosperity in agrarian sector and in a price level on agricultural products in a number of regions and republics has artificial character. To support unprofitable state and collective farms, huge additional subsidies, distribution of resources of non-agricultural branches and enterprises in agrarian sphere are saved. In a number of regions of Russia and, partly, in Non-Black Soil regions are spent partial reforms, first of all, in collective-farm system. A serious obstacle for structural diversification of agricultural production became some kind of «economic isolation» in a number of regions of the Central black soil area and the Average Volga region. It worsens the conditions of agriculture functioning and its reprocessors, complicates food supply of leading economic regions and their centers. The unity of social and economic space in the European and Asian parts of Russia is broken.  

In connection with this, it is important to introduce territorial priorities, to refuse even “smearing” distribution of efforts and financial investments in all federal subjects in long-term macroeconomic strategy of Russian’s agriculture. Areas with presuppositions and traditions of commodity production should become foreground in regional strategy of agro-industrial development.


Поступила в редакцию 12 апреля 2007 г.

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