Russia, which has taken a relatively low profile in wheat exports so far this season thanks to a poor quality harvest, already faces the prospect of a disappointing 2014-15 too thanks to unusually large rain delays to autumn sowings.
SovEcon, the influential analysis group, said in its research that as of last week farmers had completed only 7.3m hectares of seedings of winter crops, mainly wheat – the lowest late-September figure since at least the 1990s.
The previous low was 8.4m hectares set in September 2010.
"This is a big problem," said Andrey Sizov, the SovEcon managing director.
Target will be missed
The sowing delays, which reflect persistent rainfall, means that there is "no way" that Russian farmers can meet the government's 16.4m-hectare target for winter grain sowings, Mr Sizov told Agrimoney.com.
Already the ideal planting window for autumn-sown grains has closed for some areas, such as the Black Earth region, and parts of the south.
Indeed, the most area that has been planted with winter grains from the end of September onwards is 6.7m hectares.
"We may be able to beat that this year. But it is looking likely we will end up with a winter planting figure of about 14m hectares," he said.
Little chance of catch-up
Furthermore, it looked unlikely that this area would be made up in the spring, at least with the wheat for which Russia is renowned for its competitively priced supplies.
"Farmers are likely to plant more corn, maybe more sunflowers, and maybe a little bit of barley" on land left vacant by the poor autumn seeding conditions, Mr Sizov said.
"There is a significant risk of a bad winter crop next year, and a significant risk of a bad wheat crop next year.
"I doubt that we can offset the total losses we are likely to have suffered" in wheat through the loss of winter area, he said.
SovEcon's warning comes a week after a caution last week of a sharp drop in Ukraine's winter grain sowings, which have also been slowed by rains.
Ukraine's Agrarian Industry Group warned that wheat plantings may end up at 2.5m hectares, compared with 7.0m hectares that the government has targeted, and a typical figure of about 6.5m-7.0m hectares.
The alerts raise doubts over an International Grain Council forecast that world winter sowings for the 2014 harvest will rise by 5m hectares to a 17-year high of 225.4m hectares.
However, winter wheat plantings in the US have got off to a better start, with sowings 39% completed as of Sunday, up 16 points week on week, and only one point behind the average, official data overnight showed.
In the European Union, farmers in the UK, the bloc's third-ranked wheat producer, are "well underway" with autumn plantings of the grain, and have completed 30-40% of the target area, consultancy Adas said on Tuesday.