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Soviet Union

Forage Crops

Since Khrushchev's campaign to raise the consumption of meat products, the Soviet Union has been expanding the cultivation of forage crops to feed a larger number of livestock. This trend was reinforced under Brezhnev's tenure, particularly after the announcement of the Food Program in 1982. Thus the area occupied by forage crops grew dramatically from 18.1 million hectares in 1940 to 63.1 million hectares in 1960; it remained virtually unchanged throughout the 1960s and then steadily rose to reach a high of 71.4 million hectares in 1986, when it accounted for approximately onethird of the total sown area. The area occupied by perennial hay crops (alfalfa and clover) nearly doubled between 1960 and 1986, while annual grasses and corn for silage were cultivated on a gradually diminishing scale. Total nongrain feed production, including corn for silage, feed roots, and hay and green fodder, increased steadily from 427.4 million tons in 1960 to 554.6 million tons in 1986.

Data as of May 1989