LONDON, ENGLAND — Larger-than-previously estimated wheat crops in Australia, Kazakhstan and Russia led the International Grains Council on Feb. 25 to bump up its forecast for global grains (wheat and coarse grains) production in the 2020-21 marketing year to a record 2.216 billion tonnes, up from 2.21 billion forecast in the Council’s Jan. 14 grain market report.

The IGC also raised its forecast for overall global grains consumption by 6 million tonnes, to 2.222 billion tonnes from 2.216 billion. Carryover was left unchanged in the February update at 611 million tonnes, while trade was lifted to 412 million tonnes from 408 million in the previous forecast.

Global wheat production in 2020-21 was forecast at 773 million tonnes, up from 768 million in the previous month’s report. Consumption also was raised, to 756 million tonnes from 753 million, while trade was lifted to 188 million tonnes from 187 million. Carryover stocks were left unchanged at 294 million tonnes.

The IGC said its preliminary outlook for wheat supply and demand in the 2021-22 marketing year is for record production, record consumption and record stocks, but a moderate decline in trade.

“Including better harvests in Europe, North Africa and India, global wheat production is seen climbing to a new high of 790 million tonnes,” the IGC said. “Demand for wheat may be boosted by rising feed use amid tightening supplies of alternatives, including maize and barley. Further stock growth is foreseen, but this will likely again be mainly in China and India. After the elevated levels of the prior year, a retreat in shipments to China and Pakistan contribute to a projected lower volume of world trade.”

The IGC forecast a slight bump in forecast production of maize in the 2020-21 marketing year, to 1.134 billion tonnes from 1.133 billion in the January report. The consumption forecast was increased to 1.163 billion tonnes from 1.161 billion. Trade was raised to 184 million tonnes from 183 million, while carryover stocks were left unchanged at 268 million tonnes.

The forecast for global soybean production in the 2020-21 marketing year was raised 1 million tonnes to 360 million tonnes from 359 million. Consumption and carryover stock forecasts were left unchanged at 365 million tonnes and 45 million tonnes, respectively. The trade forecast for soybeans was raised to 169 million tonnes from 168 million.

Global rice production in 2020-21 was forecast up 1 million tonnes, to 504 million tonnes from 503 million. Consumption meanwhile, was left unchanged at 502 million tonnes. The forecast for carryover stocks and trade were each raised 1 million tonnes, to 176 million tonnes and 46 million tonnes, respectively, the IGC said.

With average wheat and barley prices firmer, but rowcrop markets easing slightly after a prolonged rally, the IGC Grains and Oilseeds Index (GOI) was broadly unchanged compared to the January report. The GOI wheat sub-Index was lifted 2%, underpinned by threats to 2021-22 Northern Hemisphere production prospects, strong demand and logistical constraints, the IGC said. Meanwhile, the IGC GOI maize sub-index eased 1%, mainly tied to softer fob prices in Argentina, according to the Council.