E.U. soybean production, which is still at a minor level but constantly increasing, is expected to increase 2.7%, totaling 2.3 million tonnes. Soybean area was revised down from previous forecasts and is expected to be 2.4% lower year-on-year. Bulgaria, Slovakia, Austria, Hungary, Italy, and to a lesser extent the Czech Republic reported smaller acreages.
Higher output and availability of sunflower is expected to result in increased sunflower meal use in animal feed while rapeseed meal use will be reduced due to lower production, according to the FAS. Together with an almost flat soybean meal use, total E.U.-28 consumption of major oilseeds meals in animal feed is forecast to remain virtually unchanged in market year 2016-17.
E.U. soybean production for market year 2016-17 is expected to increase slightly compared to market year 2015-16 because of higher yields, the FAS said.
The FAS said it anticipates a recovery in supply due to higher South American plantings. Compared to market year 2015-16, crush is expected to remain stable and total soybean meal imports are expected to increase slightly, with a rise in The Netherlands and in Poland and a decline in all the other major importing countries. Feed use of soybean meal is expected to increase slightly as well, the FAS said.
Due to the damage to the soybean crop in Argentina and Uruguay, the availability of soybeans from South America will be limited in the coming months, the report said. In The Netherlands, part of the imports of meal from Argentina will be replaced with beans from the U.S. and to a lesser extent from Brazil to be crushed in The Netherlands. In spite of this new trend, total soybean imports in market year 2015-16 are expected to remain lower than in market year 2014-15, according to the FAS.
Soybean meal imports and feed use are limited by the tight supply situation. In The Netherlands, which is the main importer of soybean meal in the E.U., imports from third countries are expected to decline by 10% compared to market year 2014-15, the FAS noted. Soybean meal is partially substituted by other meals and in some countries, including Spain, there is an extensive use of wheat in the feed formula.
Biofuel use of soybean oil is expected to increase approximately 100,000 tonnes in Spain and decrease about 110,000 tonnes in Germany during 2015-16.