IGC: World grain production to reach new record

by World Grain Staff
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LONDON, ENGLAND — The forecast for total world grains production in 2014-15 increased 4 million tonnes to a record 2.006 billion tonnes in the latest International Grains Council (IGC) report released on Feb. 26.

All of the revision is absorbed by higher projected consumption, mainly in the feed and industrial use sectors, as demand is being stimulated by lower prices, the IGC said. The world carryover forecast is therefore little changed from before, at 431 million tonnes, a jump of 29 million year-over-year and the largest since the mid-1980s.

Following a 4 million tonne month-on-month increase, to 304 million tonnes, world grains trade (July/June) is expected to nearly match the all-time high during 2013-14.

With crops mostly developing well, world wheat production in 2015-16 is forecast at 705 million tonnes, down by 2% year-over-year. The council’s initial projection for 2015-16 corn (maize) output is for a 5% drop, to 938 million tonnes.

Global rice production in 2014-15 is forecast to decline marginally from the previous year’s record, to 474 million tonnes. With consumption revised higher, world end-season inventories are cut to a five-year low of 101 million tonnes, the year-over-year contraction of about 8% reflecting heavy falls in the major exporters, namely Thailand and India.

The projection of trade in 2015 is raised fractionally, but is still anticipated to be down by 2% from last year’s record on smaller deliveries to Asia.

Due to improved prospects in South America, notably Argentina, the 2014-15 world soybean production forecast is lifted to a fresh peak of 315 million tonnes, up 11% year-over-year. With total use near-unchanged from before, global carryovers are raised to a high of 45 million tonnes, about 15 million tonnes larger than in the previous season, tied to expected steep increases in key exporters.

Traded volumes are projected to expand by 5%, to a record of 116 million tonnes, mostly on bigger deliveries to China.

The IGC Grains and Oilseeds Index (GOI) fell by 3% since the last report. Large world supplies continued to weigh on wheat and corn values, but soybean quotations were underpinned by demand from China and mild concerns about harvest delays and logistical problems in Brazil.

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