Global Ag News for Feb 7.24


US Agriculture Sentiment Weakens in January: Purdue Univ.

The Purdue University/CME Group’s agricultural sentiment index fell to 106 points in Jan. from 114 in Dec., according to a survey of 400 agricultural producers.

  • This is the lowest since September
  • Current conditions component declined by 9 points from Dec.
  • Future expectations down by 7 points
  • “Declining prices for key commodities weighed on agricultural producer sentiment in January,” according to the report’s authors James Mintert and Michael Langemeier


Wheat prices overnight are down 1 1/4 in SRW, down 3/4 in HRW, down 1/2 in HRS; Corn is down 4 1/2; Soybeans down 13 1/4; Soymeal down $5.20; Soyoil up 0.11.

For the week so far wheat prices are down 6 in SRW, down 7 1/4 in HRW, down 7 in HRS; Corn is down 8 1/2; Soybeans down 2 1/4; Soymeal down $3.10; Soyoil up 1.32.

For the month to date wheat prices are down 1 1/2 in SRW, down 4 1/4 in HRW, up 1/2 in HRS; Corn is down 14; Soybeans down 36; Soymeal down $14.70; Soyoil up 0.03.

Year-To-Date nearby futures are down 5.5% in SRW, down 3.8% in HRW, down 4.3% in HRS; Corn is down 7.9%; Soybeans down 8.3%; Soymeal down 8.4%; Soyoil down 3.7%.

Chinese Ag futures (MAY 24) Soybeans up 18 yuan; Soymeal up 6; Soyoil down 14; Palm oil up 8; Corn up 4 — Malaysian Palm is up 34. Malaysian palm oil prices overnight were up 34 ringgit (+0.88%) at 3877.

There were changes in registrations (-27 Soybeans). Registration total: 772 SRW Wheat contracts; 0 Oats; 6 Corn; 468 Soybeans; 125 Soyoil; 1 Soymeal; 104 HRW Wheat.

Preliminary changes in futures Open Interest as of February 6 were: SRW Wheat up 2,284 contracts, HRW Wheat up 5,553, Corn down 21,673, Soybeans up 1,222, Soymeal down 280, Soyoil up 5,640.

Brazil: Scattered showers should continue across central Brazil for the next week. Southern areas may have to wait until this weekend for more widespread showers to move in, but they could be significant when they do. Rain showers are expected to be of normal intensity across the central, allowing for a normal pace of field work in most areas. Some areas could be too wet, though.

Argentina: Some isolated showers may occur over southern areas with a front getting into the region by Wednesday. That front should finally bring good showers to much of the country later this week and weekend while temperatures will fall back to normal as well. The potentially good rainfall is needed to turn around crop conditions after more than two weeks of dry conditions and a week of 100-degree heat.

Europe: It was again dry and warm across southern growing areas while soil moisture falls for vegetative wheat in Spain and Italy. A storm system will move through southern areas later this week with more impulses through next week which will be helpful for reversing the dryness trend. Temperatures will continue to be warm with no threat of an arctic freeze.

Australia: The remnants of Tropical Cyclone Kirrily moved New South Wales on Monday, with heavy showers being mostly favorable for dry areas that continue to have deficits. Drier weather elsewhere in the country is unfavorable for cotton and sorghum that are mostly filling.

Northern Plains: Another storm system will move through Wednesday and Thursday with a mix of rain and snow, but the snow that falls could be hefty across the north. Recent and forecast precipitation will help to ease some of the recent dryness in the region.

Central/Southern Plains: A system moved through with areas of heavy precipitation over the weekend. Significant snow fell in the far northwest near the mountains. A system will move through on Wednesday and Thursday with scattered showers and another will move through southern areas this weekend that could have a mix of heavy rain and snow. Long-term deficits remain in some areas but continue to have an active pattern that is helping to gradually erase them.

Midwest: It continues to be very warm and any remaining snow continues to melt, boosting soil moisture in a lot of areas. A system will go through Thursday with scattered showers and another will move across southern areas this weekend. The latter storm could bring a mix of rain and snow to some areas. Temperatures behind that system will decrease, but still stay seasonably mild.

Delta: A system brought more heavy rain through the region this weekend. Soil moisture is much improved and drought continues to decrease in the region. Water levels along the Mississippi River and local rivers are also much higher, increasing transportation. Scattered showers will move through late week and another storm that could bring heavy precipitation on Sunday.

The player sheet for Feb. 6 had funds: net buyers of 2,000 contracts of SRW wheat, sellers of 2,500 corn, buyers of 2,000 soybeans, sellers of 1,500 soymeal, and buyers of 2,500 soyoil.


  • WHEAT PURCHASE: Jordan’s state grains buyer purchased about 60,000 metric tons of hard milling wheat to be sourced from optional origins in an international tender
  • DURUM WHEAT TENDER: Tunisia’s state grains agency issued an international tender to purchase about 100,000 metric tons of durum wheat.
  • WHEAT TENDER: Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) is looking to buy a total of 136,321 metric tons of food-quality wheat from the United States, Canada, and Australia in a regular tender that will close on Feb. 8.


  • SOYMEAL, BARLEY TENDERS: Iranian state-owned animal feed importer SLAL issued international tenders to purchase at least 120,000 metric tons of animal feed barley and 120,000 tons of soymeal.
  • RICE TENDER: South Korea’s state-backed Agro-Fisheries & Food Trade Corp. has issued an international tender to purchase an estimated 88,800 metric tons of rice to be sourced from the United States and China
  • WHEAT TENDER: Jordan’s state grain buyer has issued an international tender to buy up to 120,000 metric tons of milling wheat which can be sourced from optional origins





ETHANOL: US Weekly Production Survey Before EIA Report

Output and stockpile projections for the week ending Feb. 2 are based on eight analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

  • Production seen higher than last week at 1.021m b/d
  • Would be the second straight weekly increase after falling to the lowest since Feb. 2021
  • Stockpile avg est. 24.478m bbl vs 24.27m a week ago

Export duty on Russian wheat rises 4.8% to 3,804.6 per tonne as of Feb 7 – AgMin

The export duty on Russian wheat has risen to 3,804.6 rubles per tonne for week February 7-13, up 4.8% from 3,630.2 rubles at present, the Agriculture Ministry said.

The duty on barley has increased to 827 rubles from 512 rubles per tonne, and the duty on corn to 1,339.8 rubles from 926 rubles per tonne.

Duty rates are based on indicative prices of $251.1 per tonne for wheat compared with $251.3 the previous week, $190.9 for barley, up from $188.1, and $199.1 for corn, up from $194.8.

The Russian government on June 2, 2021, introduced a grain damper mechanism that stipulates floating duties on exports of wheat, corn, and barley, as well as returning the funds received from the duties in order to subsidize agricultural producers. The duties are calculated weekly on the basis of price indicators based on the value of export contracts registered on the Moscow Exchange

The Agriculture Ministry on June 1, 2023, hiked the baseline price for calculating the export duty on wheat, the so-called cut-off price, to 17,000 rubles per tonne from 15,000 rubles per tonne, and raised the baseline price on barley and corn to 15,875 rubles per tonne from 13,875 rubles per tonne.

The government on June 30, 2022, adopted a resolution to convert the duties into rubles as of July 2022. The duty totals 70% of the difference between the baseline price and the indicative price.


Exceptionally warm temperatures that arrived late January will persist through early February, but cold risks will return by mid-month and beyond

Quiet weather conditions will continue for a few more days before the storm track gets more active by the weekend, but snowfall potential is limited for now

Warm and wet conditions in the forecast will benefit U.S. winter wheat until mid-February, but the potential for a cold air outbreak thereafter will need to be monitored closely


The past week featured extreme U.S. warmth and generally quiet conditions. Temperatures were 15-25 °F above normal across all major crop regions, with the warmest conditions centered on North Dakota. 7-day precipitation totals were 15-30 mm (~0.6-1.2 in) drier than normal spanning the Northern Plains, Midwest, and Mississippi Delta Region, while the Southern Plains were 10-20 mm (~0.4-0.8 in) wetter than normal. Most recent precipitation fell in the form of rain, as snow coverage is entirely lacking across major winter crop regions of the country (see figure below). Regardless, recent warmth and regional rains made for a very positive week of weather for U.S. winter wheat.


The Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) will develop into a Phase 8 event during the latter portion of the 15-day forecast. This will support the potential for U.S. cold risks beyond 10 days. On 10-day numerical model performance, the EC has recently outperformed the GFS in North America. This means that the EC is the preferred model for the 10-day outlook. Numerical model performance has been improving of late, making for a high confidence forecast.

Exceptional U.S. warmth will dominate this week, but a more active pattern will then arrive toward mid-February. Temperatures through 5 days will be 15-25 °F above normal once again, with the warmest conditions focused on the Upper Midwest. However, cold temperatures will then slowly move in from the Western U.S. toward the Plains states in the 6-10 day forecast, and cold risks will further expand across most of the country beyond 10 days from all indications. As colder temperatures begin to move in, a more active storm track will arrive at the end of the week. 10-day precipitation totals will be up to 25 mm (~1 in) wetter than normal over most U.S. crop areas. Much of this will still occur as rain with accumulating snowfall largely limited to the Northern Plains at the end of this week, but that could change next week as a potentially impactful storm looms. The short-term weather outlook will remain positive for winter wheat, but the potential for a cold snap later in February will need to be monitored closely as it draws nearer.

Shift from El Nino to La Nina portends rains in Asia, dryness in Americas

  • Weather models indicate weak La Nina in 2nd half of 2024
  • La Nina may bring more rains to Australia, SE Asia, India
  • Meteorologists say it is early to forecast La Nina impact
  • Dryness could hit U.S. river transport, may help with harvest

After a strong El Nino, global weather is poised to transition to La Nina in the second half of 2024, a pattern typically bringing higher precipitation to Australia, Southeast Asia and India and drier weather to grain and oilseed producing regions of the Americas, meteorologists and agricultural analysts said.

While it is too early predict its intensity or impact on crops, meteorologists said, a shift towards a mild occurrence of La Nina, when surface ocean waters cool off the tropical west coast of South America, is looming.

“The vast majority of weather models are pointing towards a weak La Nina in the second half of the year or towards the last quarter. One out of maybe 25 weather models is showing a strong La Nina,” said Chris Hyde, a meteorologist at U.S.-based Maxar.

Last year’s El Nino, which followed three La Nina years, saw hot and dry weather in Asia and heavier rains in parts of the Americas that boosted farm output prospects in Argentina and the southern U.S. Plains.

India, the world’s biggest rice supplier, restricted exports of the staple following a poor monsoon, while wheat output in No.2 exporter Australia took a hit. Palm oil plantations and rice farms in Southeast Asia received less than normal rains.

La Nina could reverse the situation.

“Hypothetically, La Nina is obviously very good for Aussie crops, but it really depends on when the rain falls or doesn’t fall,” said Ole Houe, director of advisory services at agriculture brokerage IKON Commodities in Sydney.

“Rain needs to fall prior to planting so there is good subsoil moisture or regularly during the growing season.”

In rice and palm oil-producing Southeast Asian countries, wet weather could boost yields, analysts said, while a normal Indian monsoon would boost production and farm incomes.

“Maybe for southern India there could be a little bit of lingering dryness but for the vast majority of the country – the centre and the north in particular – slightly above normal rains,” Maxar’s Hyde said.

U.S. climatologists predict La Nina’s arrival in late summer or early fall.

“As we get into the growing season, our precipitation across the Corn Belt is primarily thunderstorm-driven,” said Iowa state climatologist Justin Glisan. “If La Nina kicks in late September, early October, that would be beneficial.”

La Nina’s onset in July-September could cause a dry autumn in the Corn Belt, benefiting U.S. farmers by speeding the harvest, although it could also lower water on Midwest rivers, hampering barge movement, and reduce grazing pastures.

“The expectations are in some cases opposite of what you would see in an El Nino,” said Mark Brusberg, chief meteorologist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The U.S. National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Centre will issue its monthly weather outlook for the northern hemisphere on Thursday, and the Japan weather bureau’s El Nino/La Nina forecast is scheduled for Friday.

Farmers Accuse Biden of Overlooking Biofuels in Race to EVs

  • EV focus is ‘short-sighted’: National Corn Growers Association
  • White House aims to have 50% of car sales be electric by 2030

The biggest US corn farmers’ group is urging the Biden administration to embrace biofuels in the push to reduce vehicle emissions rather than focusing mostly on electric cars.

The National Corn Growers Association said the White House “may be overlooking the benefits of biofuels as it rushes to embrace electric vehicles,” according to a letter viewed by Bloomberg News that will be sent to President Joe Biden on Wednesday. “If we are going to address climate change and meet our climate goals, we are going to have to take a multi-pronged approach that includes tapping into higher levels of biofuels, such as corn ethanol, which offers an immediate climate solution.”

The administration set a goal to make half of all new car sales to be electric by the end of the decade, and has touted investments in EV technologies and infrastructure. The letter was signed by almost 3,500 farmers.

Read More: Big Oil Embraces Corn as Former Foes Unite Against EV Threat

Focusing on EVs could “significantly limit” the administration’s ability to lower greenhouse-gas emissions, according to the letter. The corn group called Biden’s EV strategy “short-sighted” in a separate statement set to be released Wednesday.

More than one-third of corn grown by US farmers is distilled into ethanol, a form of alcohol blended with gasoline under a government program known as the Renewable Fuel Standard. Ethanol makers and the oil-industry lobbying group the American Petroleum Institute are pushing for legislation that would allow more of the biofuel to be used in gasoline year round.


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