Global Ag News for Jan 16.24
NOPA December US soybean crush seen at record 193.120 million bushels
The U.S. soybean processing industry likely closed out a banner year with another record monthly crush in December, analysts said ahead of a National Oilseed Processors Association (NOPA) report due on Tuesday.
NOPA members, who handle about 95% of all soybeans processed in the United States, were estimated to have crushed 193.120 million bushels last month, according to the average of estimates from 10 analysts.
If realized, it would be the largest crush for any month on record, topping the prior mark of 189.774 million bushels set in October. The December crush would be up 2.2% from November’s crush of 189.038 million bushels and up 8.8% from the December 2022 crush of 177.505 million bushels.
The soybean processing industry has been among the few bright spots for U.S. agriculture as crop exports are slumping and as prices for grain and oilseeds hover near multi-year lows.
Fueled by ample soybean supplies and strong margins, the recently expanded U.S. crush sector capitalized on robust demand for soyoil to produce renewable fuels. Meanwhile, a severe drought in top soy-product exporter Argentina last year lifted demand for U.S. soymeal.
An Argentine production rebound points to a more challenging market for U.S. processors in 2024, and margins have already begun to narrow, analysts said.
Estimates for the December crush ranged from 189.0 million to 197.380 million bushels, with a median of 193.2 million bushels.
The NOPA report is scheduled for release at 11 a.m. CST (1700 GMT) on Tuesday.
Soyoil supplies held by NOPA members as of Dec. 31 were forecast at 1.291 billion lbs, based on estimates from seven analysts. If realized, it would be up 6.4% from the 1.214 billion lbs held by NOPA members at the end of November.
Soyoil stocks estimates ranged from 1.190 billion to 1.350 billion lbs, with a median of 1.289 billion lbs.
FUTURES & WEATHER
Wheat prices overnight are up 1 in SRW, up 3 3/4 in HRW, unchanged in HRS; Corn is down 2 1/2; Soybeans up 7 1/2; Soymeal up $4.80; Soyoil up 0.25.
Markets finished last week with wheat prices up 3/4 in SRW, up 3 3/4 in HRW, down 3 in HRS; Corn is down 10 1/2; Soybeans down 13 3/4; Soymeal down $1.60; Soyoil up 0.69.
For the month to date wheat prices are down 31 in SRW, down 23 in HRW, down 24 in HRS; Corn is down 26 3/4; Soybeans down 66 1/4; Soymeal down $19.10; Soyoil up 0.32.
Year-To-Date nearby futures are down 4.9% in SRW, down 3.6% in HRW, down 3.3% in HRS; Corn is down 5.7%; Soybeans down 4.8%; Soymeal down 4.9%; Soyoil up 1.4%.
Chinese Ag futures (MAY 24) Soybeans up 26 yuan; Soymeal down 4; Soyoil up 8; Palm oil up 28; Corn up 1 — Malaysian Palm is up 62.
Malaysian palm oil prices overnight were up 62 ringgit (+1.62%) at 3880.
There were changes in registrations (-11 Soybeans, -22 Soyoil, -46 Soymeal). Registration total: 1,295 SRW Wheat contracts; 0 Oats; 6 Corn; 650 Soybeans; 125 Soyoil; 54 Soymeal; 262 HRW Wheat.
Preliminary changes in futures Open Interest as of January 12 were: SRW Wheat up 8,337 contracts, HRW Wheat up 4,598, Corn up 42,666, Soybeans up 2,588, Soymeal up 17,497, Soyoil up 11,028.
Brazil: Showers in central Brazil were somewhat isolated over the weekend and will continue to have low coverage this week. Heavier rain across the south has been favorable for some of the drier areas, including Sao Paulo and Parana. A slow-moving front will bring widespread showers to southern areas mid-late week and boost showers for central areas this weekend. Overall, the weather situation is improved or improving and even the drier stretch in central Brazil is not overly concerning for filling soybeans. Soil moisture is not adequate for safrinha corn, however, and more consistent showers will be important for planting, which should start up in the next couple of weeks.
Argentina: Scattered showers fell over a good portion of the country over the long holiday weekend. Another system will bring rounds of heavier rain through Tuesday and Wednesday, especially for northern areas. Drier conditions are looking likely afterward through the middle of next week or possibly longer. Soil moisture continues to be very good across most of the country and should be able to handle a period of drier weather with little disruption to development. If the drier period lasts too long, it could be more concerning, however.
Australia: Scattered showers fell across some limited areas over the long weekend, favorable where they hit, especially those areas in the west that have been very dry. Two systems are nearby that should continue showers early this week.
Northern Plains: Extremely cold arctic air will continue to be in place this week, but should be replaced by mild air this weekend. Harsh cold has had a detrimental effect on livestock and for those that care for them. A round of light to moderate snow is forecast to come through on Thursday, adding to some of the cold concerns.
Central/Southern Plains: A blast of arctic cold has fallen across most of the region this weekend, and came with some additional snow Sunday and Monday. Much of the winter wheat crop is covered by recent snow, but much of Oklahoma and Texas have been uncovered and are more susceptible to winterkill. Some moderation is expected midweek but another burst of energy will bring another round of harsh cold for late week and weekend. The snow is most likely in Nebraska yet again, but the harshest cold should be shorter as warmer air floods the region again next week.
Midwest: The region is tired of huge winter storms after seeing tons of snow and blizzard conditions over the last week. Harshly cold, arctic air will be in place throughout the week, though will have a brief moderation midweek before a clipper comes through with more snow on Thursday and Friday and another arctic blast. The cold will not last all that long as warm air moves back in early next week. Some areas have been exposed to the arctic cold and thus susceptible to winterkill on winter wheat.
Delta: Harsh cold air brought in a wintry mix of precipitation Sunday into Monday. Any snow may protect winter wheat from the arctic temperatures. Another burst of very cold air will move in Friday through the weekend that could also create issues for wheat. Recent heavy storms of the last week or so have significantly boosted water levels on the Mississippi River, which should increase transportation for at least a little while.
The player sheet for Jan. 12 had funds: net sellers of 3,500 contracts of SRW wheat, sellers of 10,000 corn, sellers of 7,000 soybeans, sellers of 1,500 soymeal, and sellers of 2,500 soyoil.
- CORN TENDER: Algerian state agency ONAB issued an international tender to purchase up to 120,000 tons of animal feed corn
- FEED BARLEY TENDER: Algeria’s state grains agency ONAB issued an international tender to buy 30,000 tons of animal feed barley to be sourced from optional origins
- WHEAT TENDER: Jordan’s state grain buyer issued an international tender to buy up to 120,000 metric tons of milling wheat which can be sourced from optional origins.
- FEED WHEAT AND BARLEY TENDER: Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) said it will seek 60,000 metric tons of feed wheat and 20,000 tons of feed barley via a simultaneous buy-and-sell (SBS) auction that will be held on Jan. 17.
US 2024 Winter Wheat Plantings Estimate at 34.4M Acres: USDA
Winter wheat acreage fell by 6.2% from a year ago, according to the US Department of Agriculture’s seedings report released Friday on the agency’s website.
- Analysts were expecting 35.7m acres in a Bloomberg survey, with range 34.5m to 39.4m acres
- Hard-red winter wheat est. 24m acres vs 25.7m acres in 2023
CROP SURVEY: US December Soybean Crush Seen at 192.6M Bushels
Projections are based on a survey of six analysts conducted by Bloomberg News on Jan. 11-12.
- Soybean crush seen 8.5% higher vs December of last year, and an increase of 1.9% vs a month ago
- Oil stocks at the end of last month seen at 1.254b lbs vs 1.791b a year earlier
Brazil Farmers Harvest 2.38% Of 2023/2024 Soybean Area Versus 0.85% At This Time Last Year – Patria Agronegocios
BRAZIL FARMERS HARVEST 2.38% OF 2023/2024 SOYBEAN AREA VERSUS 0.85% AT THIS TIME LAST YEAR – PATRIA AGRONEGOCIOS
BRAZIL FARMERS HARVEST 2023/2024 SOYBEAN CROP AT FASTEST PACE SINCE 2017 – PATRIA AGRONEGOCIOS
Brazil’s Mato Grosso soybean output to fall by 9.56 mln tns – state farmer group
Brazilian soybean growers in Mato Grosso state, the country’s biggest producer, will harvest an estimated 35.75 million metric tons of the oilseed in the 2023/2024 cycle, representing a fall of 9.56 million tons from the previous season, state farmer group Aprosoja-MT said on Friday.
The figure is lower than the 40.2 million tons of production for Mato Grosso that national crop agency Conab expects.
Aprosoja-MT said because of excessively dry and hot weather, Mato Grosso’s soy yields are expected to fall to 50.2 bags per hectare from 63.74 bags last season.
Brazil’s soy crop outlook has worsened since the season began, with initial projections pegging output at as high as 165 million tons, driven by an area increase and the expectation of strong yields before the El Niño weather pattern intensified.
At least three private forecasters this month cut output expectations for Brazil’s soybean crop, including consultancy Patria, which has one of the lowest production estimates in the market.
Patria said on Thursday Brazil will produce around 143 million tons of soybeans.
Extreme weather, which also brought heavy rains to the south of Brazil, shaved a whopping 21.5 million tons off Brazil’s original production potential, according to Patria.
If Patria’s expectations are confirmed, growers are looking at Brazil’s second-worst crop failure in history after the 2021/2022 cycle, when farmers were unable to produce 25 million tons because of adverse climate conditions, Patria said.
Brazil 2023/24 Soy Harvest 2.1% Done as of Jan. 12: Safras
Harvest of in Brazil’s soy crop was 1% a year earlier, consultancy firm Safras & Mercado says in an emailed report.
- Compares with a 5-year average of 1.7%
- “Work started earlier”, Safras & Mercado says
- Parana harvest is 4% complete, vs 4.2% in the 5-year average
- Mato Grosso harvest is 6% done, vs 4% for the 5-year average
Brazil 2023/24 Soy Harvest 2.3% Done as of Jan. 11: AgRural
Compares with 0.6% a week earlier and also 0.6% a year before, according to an emailed report from consulting firm AgRural.
- Production is now seen at 150.1m tons, a reduction of 9m tons over previous estimate
- Summer corn harvest 5.1% done in Brazil’s Center-South region as of Jan. 11, compared with 3.3% a week earlier and 4.5% a year before
- Winter corn seeding is at 0.4%
- Total 2023/24 corn production is seen at 114.1m tons
Ships Carrying 1.3m Tons of Grain Diverted From Red Sea: Kpler
Ships carrying 1.3m tons of grain and headed for the Suez canal have been diverted to other routes in the last 3 weeks, according to Kpler analyst Ishan Bhanu.
- NOTE: US-flagged ships were told on Friday to restrict transit, as coalition forces carry out strikes against targets used by Houthi rebels in Yemen
- Most of the vessels were confirmed diverted in the last 4 days
- Kpler confirms diversions if vessels are seen heading towards the Cape of Good Hope
- “More vessels are making the decision to take the cape route since the beginning of Jan, especially those sailing from the US Gulf”
- On average, 80 million tons of grains pass through the Red Sea a year, with 28m tons going to China
- US soybeans, European wheat and barley and Australian rapeseed are major agricultural commodities affected by Red Sea shipping issues
Ukraine grains export rises to 2.1 mln T in January y/y – ministry
Ukraine’s grain exports this month so far have reached 2.1 million metric tons versus 1.7 million a year earlier, agriculture ministry data showed on Monday.
The ministry gave no explanation for the increase.
Ukraine’s grain exports in the 2023/24 July-June marketing season so far have fallen to about 20.6 million tons from almost 24.5 million at the same stage last year, the data showed.
Exports have included almost 8.2 million tons of wheat, 11 million tons of corn and 1.2 million tons of barley.
By Jan. 16 of the previous season, Ukraine had exported 8.9 million tons of wheat, 13.8 million tons of corn and 1.7 million tons of barley.
Ukraine has traditionally shipped most of its exports through its deep water Black Sea ports.
The Ukrainian government expects a harvest of 81.3 million tons of grain and oilseeds in 2023, with a 2023/24 exportable surplus of about 50 million tons.
CORN/CEPEA: Weak demand and harvest advance press down values in Brazil
After starting 2024 increasing, corn prices dropped this week, due to harvest advancing of summer crop and, mainly, to the lower demand. Moreover, devaluations abroad reduced export parity, reinforcing the downward trend in Brazil.
Purchasers show less interest in buying corn this moment, betting on the summer crop for limiting new increases in prices. Sellers, in turn, believe in a recover of the values next months – in fact, despite recent decreases, contracts traded in B3 indicate averages near from BRL 70 per 60-kilo in the second semester.
It is also important to consider that estimates show lower Brazilian production in this current season, due to the adverse weather during the summer crop and the perspective of inferior area in 2023/24. On the other hand, rains registered in some regions last days resulted in expectations of some recover on field conditions.
The ESALQ/BM&FBovespa Index (Campinas, SP) dropped 4.7% compared to Jan 4, averaging BRL 68.00 per 60-kilo bag on Jan 11. On the average of the regions surveyed by Cepea, corn values decreased 0.2% in the wholesale market (deals between processors), but increased 1.2% in the over-the-counter market (paid to farmers).
EXPORT – Brazilian corn exports started January at a good pace – the daily average is 20% higher than that in Jan/23. According to Secex data, considering just the first four working days of the year, the volume exported reached 1.33 million tons. Anec says that shipments may amount 3.7 million tons in January.
FIELD – Producers improved the harvesting rhythm in Rio Grande do Sul state, favored by the lower volume of rainfalls. By Jan. 11, 13% of the total area had been harvested in that region, 2.2 percentage points more than in 2023, according to Emater. In Paraná, Seab/Deral indicates that 1% of the area had been harvested up Jan 8. The national average sowed in the summer crop corresponds to 84.3% up Jan 7, while harvest activities represent 4.2% of the area, according to Conab.
SOYBEAN/CEPEA: Prices start this year at the lowest levels since 2020
Soybean prices started 2024 moving down, returning to the levels verified in 2020. This scenario is related to devaluations abroad, decreases in the export premium and also to the lower international demand, mainly from China. Moreover, the pressure comes from estimates indicating higher production in South America in the 2023/24 crop – on the other hand, some players expect a significant reduction in supply, due to impacts of the unfavorable weather on Brazilian fields.
In the partial of this year (from December 28 to January 11), the ESALQ/BM&FBovespa Index (Paranaguá) decreased 8.9%, closing at BRL 129.83 per 60-kg bag on Jan. 11, the lowest value since August 17 of 2020. In January/23, this Index was at BRL 177 per 60-kg bag on average.
The CEPEA/ESALQ Index (Paraná) moved down 10.7% in the partial of this year, to close at BRL 122.20 per 60-kg bag on Jan. 11, the lowest value since August 14 of 2020. On the average of the regions surveyed by Cepea, soybean prices decreased 7.9% in the over-the-counter market (paid to farmers) and 9.3% in the wholesale market (deals between processors).
BYPRODUCTS – Soybean meal and soybean oil prices are also decreasing in this early 2024. Most part of consumers claims to have stocks for the mid-term and prefers waiting to close new trades – they bet on lower values next weeks, considering the harvest advancing of soybean.
WHEAT/CEPEA: Trades keep slow in BR, due to weak demand and producers’ focus on field
Brazilian wheat market keeps moving at a slow pace, registering only few trades. Purchasers are not much interested in buying new volumes, since by-products demand is stable. Producers, in turn, are focused on crop activities related to the summer crop. Regarding prices, after starting the year firm, the values decreased last days.
According to data from Cepea, between January 5 and 12, the prices paid to wheat farmers (over-the-counter market) decreased 0.77% in Santa Catarina, 0.58% in Paraná and 0.38% in Rio Grande do Sul. In the wholesale market (deals between processors), values moved down 4.19% in São Paulo, 2.7% in Rio Grande do Sul, 1.75% in Paraná and 0.41% in Santa Catarina. In the same period, dollar devaluated 0.37% against Real, closing at BRL 4.854 on Friday, 12.
ESTIMATIVES – Conab estimates the wheat production in Brazil at 8.09 million tons in the 2023/24 season, finished in late 2023, downing 0.6% in relation to that in December and 23.3% compared to the record in previous season.
Despite higher area in 2023 (3.47 million hectares, 12.5% up compared to the crop before), the productivity was affected by the unfavorable weather conditions (to 2.33 tons/hectare), 31.8% down compared to 2022.
El Nino Rains Fuel Bumper Harvest for Paraguay Soybean Exporters
- Capeco expects first soy crop to reap about 9.5 million tons
- Upbeat outlook adds to signs of already well supplied market
The first of two Paraguayan soybean crops is set to match last year’s total harvest as El Nino rains boost growing conditions in the South American country, according to trade group Capeco.
The upbeat outlook for the region’s No. 3 producer of the oilseed adds to signs of an already well supplied global market, with prices down about 6% this year. While the El Nino weather phenomenon spells dry conditions for northern Brazil, it tends to bring rains that support crops in the central and southern growing belts of South America.
With about a 10th of the current crop harvested, Paraguayan growers may reap about 9.5 million metric tons, Capeco Executive Director Hugo Pastore said in an interview. That would equal the combined harvests of last year, in a boost to exports in the landlocked country.
“There is optimism that we could have a good year,” said Pastore, who sees the harvest ending a month later in March because weather delayed planting in late 2023.
Last year, Paraguay’s soy exports more than doubled to almost 6.5 million tons worth $3.4 billion as rains helped farmers recover from a drought the previous season.
Argentina’s purchases of those exports soared to 93% after a deep drought slashed its harvest, according to central bank data. This year, Argentina’s share of Paraguayan soy shipments probably will return to the normal 70% level, with other traditional buyers including Brazil and Russia taking the rest, Pastore said.
India to allow edible oil imports at lower duty until March 2025
India will extend edible oil imports at a lower duty by another year until March 2025, the government said in a notification issued late on Monday, as the world’s biggest vegetable oil importer moves to contain local prices.
The lower import duty structure on crude palm oil, crude sunflower oil and crude soyoil was set to expire in March 2024.
“The decision was expected as the government is keen to keep prices in check ahead of elections,” said Sandeep Bajoria, CEO of Sunvin Group, a vegetable oil brokerage.
India’s annual retail inflation rose at the fastest pace in four months in December, driven by a rise in prices of some food items.
To bring down prices, the government banned wheat exports in 2022 and prohibited overseas shipments of non-basmati white rice last year. New Delhi has also halted mills from exporting sugar this year.
India would continue with its export curbs on wheat, rice and sugar for now, trade minister Piyush Goyal said on Saturday.
“The notification is not changing the current duty structure. So, there won’t be any impact on local prices or import patterns,” Bajoria said.
India buys palm oil mainly from Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand, while it imports soyoil and sunflower oil from Argentina, Brazil, Russia and Ukraine.
India’s palm oil imports rose to their highest in four months in December as purchases of refined palmolein surged because of competitive prices.
While the government aims to maintain price stability, the long-term policy has adverse effects on local oilseed growers, said B.V. Mehta, executive director of the Solvent Extractors’ Association of India.
“The pressure on oilseed prices from cheaper imports effectively discourages them from planting more,” Mehta said.
India, which meets more than two-thirds of its edible oil requirements through imports, has been struggling to increase oilseed production as farmers find other crops more lucrative.
India Says It Won’t Need to Import Wheat as Local Supply Enough
India, the world’s second-biggest grower and consumer of wheat, will refrain from importing wheat as local supplies are adequate to meet domestic demand and don’t need to be supplemented, Food Minister Piyush Goyal said.
- India won’t remove restrictions on exports of wheat, rice, sugar and onion for now to prevent any surge in domestic prices, Goyal told reporters in New Delhi on Saturday
- NOTE: India Has No Plan to Import Wheat From Russia: Food Secretary
- NOTE: India to Sell More Wheat in Open Market to Control Local Prices
- The government won’t allow duty-free imports of corn as sought by an industry association: Goyal
- India, the world’s top sugar consumer, won’t need imports in 2023-24 as supplies in the domestic market are sufficient to meet demand: Goyal
- The government won’t allow use of cane juice to make ethanol
- NOTE: India Court to Examine Government’s Rule on Ethanol Production
China’s Corn Output Hit Record in 2023 on More Area, Good Yields
Corn production in the Asian nation rose 4.2% from a year earlier to record 288.84 million tons, China’s agriculture ministry said on Friday.
- Farmers planted the grain on more land last year, while yields advanced as well, the ministry said in its monthly agricultural supply and demand report, raising its previous forecast in line with data released by the National Bureau of Statistics
- China’s soybean output rose 2.8% to 20.84 million tons in 2023
- Large pig herds are supporting feed demand for both corn and soybeans
- Restocking demand from traders and processors ahead of the spring festival could also support prices
- Cotton output dropped 6.1% to 5.62 million tons
Palm Oil Seen Strong on Tighter Supply and Indian Demand: Mistry
Palm oil is expected to climb to as much as 4,200 ringgit a ton by the end of June amid tightening supplies and higher demand from top buyer India, according to veteran trader Dorab Mistry.
- The most-consumed vegetable oil is expected to trade between 3,600 ringgit and 4,200 ringgit in the first half of 2024 on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives, Mistry, a director at Godrej International Ltd., said in slides prepared for a vegetable oil conference in Karachi on Saturday
- Mistry’s latest forecast compared with an earlier prediction of the tropical oil trading between 3,700 ringgit and 4,500 ringgit during December-June
- NOTE: Palm oil closed 1.6% higher at 3,856 ringgit in Kuala Lumpur on Friday
- Palm oil production in top grower Indonesia will be lower by 1 million tons in 2024 from a year earlier
- Malaysian output will be unchanged even though trees are getting older and re-planting has been neglected
- India’s vegetable oil imports will fall in 2024; production of oilseeds this year will also decline; carryover stocks of oilseeds into 2024 are historically high
- India’s vegetable oil imports in 2023-24 seen at 16.22 million tons vs 16.54 million tons tons a year earlier; palm oil imports seen rising to 10.4 million tons from 9.79 million tons; soyoil purchases expected at 2.9 million tons vs 3.68 million tons; sunflower oil imports likely at 2.9 million tons vs 3 million tons
- World vegetable oil incremental supply in 2023-24 seen at 2.6 million tons vs an increase in demand of 7 million tons
- Market consensus has emerged for a huge crop in South America and that will lead to pressure on soybeans, soyoil and soybean meal from May 2024 onward
Ukraine Says Romanian Farmers Stop Blocking Border Crossing
Romanian farmers on Saturday ended a blockade of trucks at a Ukrainian border crossing begun earlier in the day, Ukraine’s border guard service said on its website.
- Ukraine earlier reported the blockade at the Siret crossing point, said reason was unknown
- NOTE: European neighbors complained last year that Ukrainian grain exports were damaging their markets;, prompting Kyiv to agree with Romania and Bulgaria on plan to control outbound shipments of wheat, corn, sunflower seeds and rapeseed
Russia increases rapeseed oil exports 70% in 2023 to 1.7 million tonnes -Agroexport
Preliminary data show that Russia exported 1.7 million tonnes of rapeseed oil in 2023, 70% more than in 2022, while export revenues increased 20%, the Agriculture Ministry’s Agroexport center said.
The data on shipments to EAEU countries are from January through November 2023.
China remains the top customer for Russian rapeseed oil. In 2023, 1.46 million tonnes were shipped there (a 2.2-fold increase), with a 53% increase in shipment value.
“The leading importers of Russian rapeseed oil traditionally include European countries, but their share is decreasing. Last year, exports to Latvia decreased 20% to 76,000 tonnes, with a 47% decrease in value. Shipments to Norway decreased 75% to 16,000 tonnes in volume, and were down 85.1% in value,” the statement says.
The top five buyers also include Turkey (9,200 tonnes, down 62% YoY) and Belarus (8,200 tonnes, up 12%).
Executive director of the Fat and Oil Union, Mikhail Maltsev, said that the record rapeseed harvest and restrictions on exports made it possible to produce a record volume of nearly 1.5 million tonnes of rapeseed oil in the 2022/2023 season, almost 80% more than the previous season. Almost the entire volume was exported. This season, rapeseed oil production is forecast to reach 1.4 million tonnes. “Since domestic consumption is no more than 50,000 tonnes per year, the remaining volume will most likely go to foreign markets,” he said.
The Blago group of companies exported 72,500 tonnes of rapeseed oil in the 2023 calendar year, which is 13,000 tonnes more than last year. “There have been no major changes in the structure of exports. The main buyer was and remains China. However, we also ship oil to some other countries: in 2023, these were Vietnam, Mongolia, Israel and Uzbekistan. Last year was quite difficult for logistics in general, but the favorable geographical locations of our factories and our developed multimodal supply routes made it possible to keep export volumes at a fairly high level,” Blago Marketing Director Kirill Melnikov said.
In 2024, the company expects to at least maintain, and possibly increase, exports to China, as well as to other countries.
The Federal Customs Service said that, from 2018 through 2022, Russian shipments of rapeseed oil to foreign markets increased 2.1-fold in volume and almost fourfold in value. ITC Trade Map statistics show that, since 2018, Russia has been one of the world’s top three exporters of rapeseed oil. In 2022, global rapeseed oil imports reached $14 billion. Canada was the largest supplier with 34% of total global exports. Germany was second with 13% and Russia third with 10%.
Russia Grain Traders Grab Market Control After Westerners’ Exit
Top Russian grain traders are grabbing an increasing share of the market, after Western traders exited the world’s largest wheat exporter.
Grain Gates and trading house RIF were the biggest grain exporters in the first half of the 2023-24 season, according to data from analysts at IKAR and ProZerno. The ranking is the first to show which Russian traders are benefiting the most after the big western shippers stopped sourcing grain for export in Russia following Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine.
While RIF has topped the ranking for years, Grain Gates was created in the wake of the war and has quickly jumped to the top.
Russia’s bumper harvests have helped bring global wheat prices down since they hit record highs following the invasion of Ukraine, another major global supplier. That also means that Moscow has greater control over world grain and wheat supplies.
The Kremlin has been using that to try and put a floor under Russian wheat prices for export, and to bolster its diplomatic efforts as it gives free grain cargoes to some allies in Africa. It’s currently on track for a third consecutive record wheat crop.
Cargill Inc., Viterra and Louis Dreyfus Co. all stopped sourcing grain in Russia for export last July, after facing calls to leave from local governors and other companies. Viterra’s former Russian unit was renamed MZK Export, according to Spark Interfax. It ranked in the top four grain shippers in the first half of the season.
Viterra, Cargill and Louis Dreyfus had been among the top 10 exporters before they left the market.
The ranking shows grain volumes that originated within Russia for export. Western traders can still buy cargoes from other firms at ports.
US Pork Production Falls 3.7% This Week, Beef Down: USDA
US federally inspected pork production falls to 493m pounds for the week ending Jan. 13 from 512m in the previous week, according to USDA estimates published on the agency’s website.
- Hog slaughter down 3.9% from a week ago to 2.279m head
- Beef production down 0.2% from a week ago, cattle slaughter falls 0.4%
- For the year, beef production is 8% below last year’s level at this time, and pork is 8.9% below
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