Производство чечевицы. Тенденции и перспективы. - Atameken-Agro

Lentil production. Trends and prospects.

Atameken-Agro JSC considers lentil production in Kazakhstan to be one of the most promising areas of agriculture.

Despite the fact that most of the acreage in the structure of the leading Kazakh agricultural holding is occupied by grain crops, the management of Atameken-Agro JSC is convinced that Kazakhstan needs and can move away from monoculture farming. The company actively monitors global trends and strives to diversify production by increasing the share of legumes. In particular, lentils. Compared to wheat, legumes have higher margins, they saturate the soil with valuable nitrogen and, in general, their cultivation reduces greenhouse gas emissions, which has a beneficial effect on the environment. 

According to market experts, global consumption of legumes may increase to 116.8 million tons per year by 2031 (from 99.7 million tons in 2022). Despite the fact that today the consumption of legumes exceeds their production by 8.26 million tons per year.

Crop farms that are part of Atameken-Agro began growing lentils back in 2014, clearly understanding where the market situation was heading. Today, lentils and another crop, peas, dominate legume production in Kazakhstan. This was announced by the Chairman of the Board of Atameken-Agro JSC Kintal Islamov at the international conference “Asia Grain Conference”, which was held in Almaty in the spring.

Moreover, in recent years, the trend has led to a reduction in pea production in Kazakhstan in favor of lentils. This happens because this crop is more resistant to dry conditions than peas. In addition, according to the head of Atameken-Agro, a more significant reason for the increase in lentil acreage is its good margins.


— In 2022, we produced peas 7.4% of the total gross harvest in Kazakhstan. At the same time, lentils account for almost 19.9% of the total gross harvest, noted K. Islamov. — In 2021-2022, lentil sowing rates increased.

According to the holding, today the main markets for peas are Afghanistan and Uzbekistan. Kazakh lentils go to Turkey.

Seeing the prospects for growing lentils, Atameken-Agro JSC is currently considering the construction of a plant for processing this crop. This will not only help Kazakhstan improve its own food security, but will also make it one of the important players in the export market of pulses in Central Asia.

As for the other two legumes grown in Kazakhstan - chickpeas and beans - their production is not as interesting to the company as lentils. There are several reasons for this: the main producers and exporters of these crops are neighboring countries (for example, Uzbekistan); the cost of chickpeas is lower than the more promising lentils, and the experience of producing beans in Kazakhstan is still relatively small. In addition, climatic conditions do not always allow it to be grown: it is moisture- and heat-loving. In this regard, the chickpea area was reduced by the company. 

According to K. Islamov, lentil production in Kazakhstan has every prospect of becoming an important crop for the country’s economy. The main objectives are to expand suitable markets and convenient supply chains.




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