RABAT, MOROCCO — Seeking to increase its food security, Morocco has imported more than 200,000 tonnes of grain, mostly wheat, from Russia in the first half of the year, Morocco World News reported.

A majority of the shipments originated from the Vysotsk grain terminal near St. Petersburg.

A delegation from Morocco’s National Food Safety Office recently visited Russia for firsthand knowledge of the nation’s grain quality control measures. The visit included observing the grain loading process and quality control procedures, Morocco World News said.

In September 2023, Russia said it was ready to supply Morocco with wheat at “reasonable prices.” Morocco imported 80,900 tonnes of wheat in November and another 81,300 tonnes in December.

Dry and hot weather in the first part of 2024 has driven Moroccan grain production to record lows, according to the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). In 2023-24, Morocco imported 80% of its wheat needs from European Union countries, the FAS said.

Import demand for 2024-25 is estimated at 7.5 million tonnes for wheat and 1.5 million tonnes of barley.