Grains, Seeds, Vegoils, Meals, Softs, Agri News

Apr 22 - China's soybean imports from US halve in March as Brazil's gain pace
China's soybean imports from the United States fell by half in March from a year earlier and corn exports also plummeted, as buyers favour more competitive supplies from Brazil's hefty harvest, data showed on Saturday. U.S. suppliers face stiff competition for global export sales from South America, which have reported plentiful harvests and offer more competitive prices.

Apr 22 - Putin orders Russian government to outline proposals for BRICS grain exchange
Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered his government to present proposals to facilitate grain trading with other countries including India and China, according to documents published by the Kremlin on Saturday. The idea for the grain exchange also including Brazil and South Africa among others - which together with Russia make up the group of countries known as the BRICS - is to allow buyers to purchase directly from producers, and was already backed by Putin ahead of summit of the group in October.

Apr 19 : Ukrainian Agri Market Weekly report - SPIKE_BROKER

Sold in a week
· DAP corn Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @156$→157$→158$
· feed wheat DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @161$
· wheat 11.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @177$→178$
· DAP sunflower Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @16'300 UAH→16'000 UAH
· soy NE-GMO ISCC DAP center. Hungary, May-Jun @465€

- Ukraine:
· The rate of sowing campaign of spring and technical crops is twice ahead of last year's one: as of 18.04, only 2053 thousand hectares were sown against last year's figure of 1005 thousand hectares.
· Spring and technical crops were sown at 18.04: wheat - 205 thousand hectares (83%); barley - 741 thousand hectares (91%); peas - 157 thousand hectares (98%); oats - 136 thousand hectares (84%); corn - 750 thousand hectares (19%); sunflower - 1395 thousand hectares (26%) and soybeans - 116 thousand hectares (6%).
· During the 15 days of April, Ukraine exported: corn - 2.1 million tons, wheat - 0.8 million tons, barley - 180 thousand tons, soybean - 40 thousand tons, rapeseed - 70 thousand tons, sunflower - 37 thousand tons, sunflower oil - 353 thousand tons, soybean oil - 13 thousand tons, cake and meal - 312 thousand tons.
· Structure of grain, oil and processed products export by means of transport in April: by sea - 3 million tons; by river transport - 0.5 million tons; by rail - 316 thousand tons; by road - 58 thousand tons.

- Reduction of corn residues in Ukraine against the background of consistently high rates of monthly exports forced grain prices to be fixed. Corn traded at 155-157$ with delivery to the seaports of Ukraine in April-May. Buyers on the western border are ready to buy corn at 150€, loaded into the cars on a narrow gauge 1435 cm in Ukraine. The new crop on the western border continues to be traded at 155€ FCA from October to December.

- A rapid decline in wheat exports confirms almost complete exhaustion of residues for grain exports. Food and forage wheat prices have strengthened against the background of a limited supply. European buyers have become more active in purchasing new crop food wheat from Ukraine on the western border at 165-190€, depending on the protein content and delivery period, loaded into the European train.

- Sunflower prices remained at the level of last week. The decline in prices for sunflower oil in the foreign market limited the growth of sunflower prices.

- Processors in Europe cover their residual soybean needs for the period June-August. Ukrainian soybean without GMO could be implemented at 455-460€ with delivery to processing in Hungary, 465-470€ with delivery to the processor in Austria or 425-430€ with delivery to Italy.

Apr 19 - US EPA to announce temporary expanded sales of higher-ethanol gasoline blend - sources
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will announce plans to temporarily expand sales of higher-ethanol blends of gasoline this summer, a win for the corn ethanol industry that will likely see demand increase, three sources familiar with the matter said. The measure would lengthen the period during which Americans can keep buying E15, a gasoline that uses a 15% ethanol blend, from June 1 to Sept. 15.

Apr 19 - China set for bumper harvests of grains and oilseeds, ministry says
China is set for another year of bumper harvest of grains and oilseeds, helped by expanded planting of winter wheat and rapeseed and healthy growth of seedlings, the country's agriculture ministry said. The world's second-biggest corn grower reported a record corn crop of 288.8 million metric tons last year but continues to aim for larger output amid rising tensions with some trade partners, climate-related disasters and military conflicts.

Apr 18 - Argentina corn harvest faces more deep cuts from stunt disease spread
Argentina's corn harvest, already cut sharply due to a stunt disease spread by leafhopper insects, is "likely" to be slashed significantly further, a Rosario grains exchange analyst said on Wednesday, a potential knock to global supplies. Argentina, the world's No. 3 corn exporter, once expected a record haul of corn, but since March the crop has been hit by an unprecedented outbreak of the bugs, which led the exchange to slash its forecast by 6.5 million tons to 50.5 million tons last week.

Apr 18 - Brazil's over-performing soy crop may keep padding global stocks - Braun
Last year, Brazil raised a soybean crop exceeding 160 million metric tons, nearly doubling the decade-ago levels as the top exporter expanded production to meet rising global demand. That is a significantly larger volume than analysts, including U.S. and Brazilian agencies, originally expected prior to last season. That trend that could continue this year, though it is unclear whether that excess supply will manifest next month or many months from now.

Apr 17  Egypt's GASC bought 120,000 MT of wheat from Ukraine in an international tender on Tuesday, April 16.
 - The wheat was purchased in two consignments for May 20-30 shipment with payment to be made via 270-day letters of credit.
    60,000 MT of Ukrainian wheat from LDC at 255.35 $/mt c&f (220 $/mt fob Odesa+35.35 $/mt freight)
    60,000 MT of Ukrainian wheat from LDC at 256.6 $/mt c&f (221.25 $/mt fob Odesa+35.35 $/mt freight)

Apr 17  South Korea's Nonghyup Feed Inc. (NOFI) bought 68,000 MT of US or South American feed corn in a private deal on Tuesday, April 16.
- The corn was purchased from Bunge at 243.99 $/mt c&f+1.5 $/mt surcharge for additional port unloading for arrival by July 30

Apr 17 - The Korea Feed Association (KFA's Incheon section) bought about 70,000 MT of US or South American feed corn in a private deal on Tuesday, April 16.
- Corn was bought from Mitsui at 243.45 $/mt c&f for arrival by July 30

Apr 17 - Brazil's Abiove raises 2023 soy output view, raises beginning stocks
A revision of Brazilian soybean production in 2023 affected estimates for the country's beginning stocks this year, according to new data released by oilseeds lobby Abiove on Tuesday. With the upward revision pegging Brazil's 2023 soy output at 160.3 million metric tons, a record, beginning stocks have been estimated at 5.9 million tons, 1.2 million metric tons more than calculated previously.

Apr 17 - Russia's agricultural sector largely unscathed by floods, minister says
The work of Russian agricultural companies has not been significantly disrupted by heavy flooding in several regions, Agriculture Minister Dmitry Patrushev said on Tuesday, easing fears about possible crop destruction. The area of spring sowing is approaching 5 million hectares, a slightly higher pace than last year, the minister added.

Apr 16 - Concern grows for Argentina's soy harvest due to heavy rains
Prolonged rainfall over Argentina's farming heartland has fueled fears of delays to the ongoing soybean harvest that could cause production losses, the Rosario grains exchange said on Monday.  Since Friday, at least 70 millimetersof rain fell across most of the agricultural region, with peaks of 140 millimeters in some parts.

Apr 16 - US winter wheat ratings dip slightly; corn 6% seeded
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's weekly crop progress report showed 55% of the U.S. winter wheat crop rated in good-to-excellent condition, down a percentage point from last week but still the highest for this time of year since 2020. The condition of the winter wheat crop was in line with analyst expectations, with some analysts noting dry and windy conditions in portions of the southern Plains that could stress crops there.

Apr 15 - Wheat gained on Friday on continued weather concerns
- Wheat futures were mostly higher on Friday amid weather-related issues for the next crop and fears of disruption in Black Sea grain shipments. Chicago May wheat was up 4 1/4 cents at $5.56 while Kansas City gained 6 1/2 cents at $5.89 3/4 while Minneapolis was up 5 3/4 cents at $6.42 3/4. A further fall in the euro also provided some support to Euronext futures. A global agricultural risk-off trade seems to be driving the market causing some more purchases in commodity futures globally.
- Repeated Russian attacks against Ukrainian energy infrastructure and reported attempts by the Russian government to seize domestic exporters’ assets also added a risk premium into the market.
- Canadian wheat exports remain strong. Canada’s standard wheat exports increased by 505,700 metric tons to 14.50 million metric tons in the week ending 7 April. Total durum wheat exports reached 2.42 million metric tons, which put all wheat exports at 16.92 million metric tons since 1 August.

Apr 15 - Sharp post-Easter fall in EU egg price - EU commission
- European egg prices fell back substantially over the past week as the impetus of pre-Easter trading finally faded from the market. Prices fell virtually across the board as buyers took the opportunity to force prices down to their lowest level in seven weeks. In the week ending 7 April, the EU average price for Class A eggs in packing stations was €225.08 ($239.50) per 100 kg, down by 2.8% on the previous week. Sharp week-on-week reductions were evident particularly in Germany (-8.7%), Poland (-6.4%) and the Netherlands (-3.5%).
- Egg prices normally fall back in the second quarter of the year, and values are expected to continue to ease over the next couple of months. As well as reduced consumer demand, there is also evidence of an upturn in production as farms re-stock after the losses caused by the 2022-23 avian flu outbreak. European Commission figures showed that monthly layer hen placings in February 2024 were at their highest level for well over two years, at well over 16 million head.

Apr 15 - Funds stay with bearish CBOT corn views despite global supply shrinkage - Braun
Speculators’ bearish Chicago corn stance has been relatively consistent since mid-March, but overall supply potential has eased since then given smaller U.S. corn plantings, questionable weather in Brazil and unprecedented disease in Argentina. In the week ended April 9, money managers increased their net short position in CBOT corn by about 4,000 contracts to 263,554 futures and options contracts, a five-week high but little changed from the previous four weeks.

Apr 15 - Brazil ends 2023/24 crop with output records for sugar, ethanol
Brazil's Centre-South region concluded the 2023/24 crop (April-March) posting for the first time production records for sugarcane, sugar and ethanol, industry group UNICA said in a report on Friday. Brazil's CS processed 654 million metric tons of sugarcane, 19% more than in the previous crop, as the region benefited from near perfect weather conditions both during crop development and harvesting time.

Apr 12 - Ukrainian Agri Weekly Report (SPIKE_BROKER)

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @153$→155$
· corn 2024 FCA border of Ukraine, Oct-Dec @155€
· wheat 11.5pro 2024 DAP Odesa, Ukraine, Jul-Heather @178$
· wheat 11.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @178$→177$
· feed wheat DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @157$

- Ukraine:
· The pF attacks on export infrastructure make exporters diversify and use alternative export logistics.
· The pF war with Ukraine gave an impetus to Ukrainian business to develop export infrastructure by river and land with total capacity up to 40 million tons per year.
· Uncertainty in trade relations with Europe gave Ukraine an impetus in the development of the processing industry and reducing Ukrainian farmers in growing grain with the increase in oilseeds production in 2024.
· The 2024 grain harvest in Ukraine is projected to fall to 48-51 million tons, the lowest level in 10 years.
· Ukraine expects a decline in corn exports of 2024 harvest by 17-20%, or almost 5 million tons. It is also expected to reduce wheat exports by 11-13%, or almost 4 million tons compared to last year, according to estimates of specialized analytical companies and associations.

- The prices for corn have undergone a minor correction in relation to last week. Rumors about the abolition of purchases of corn of Ukrainian origin by China have not found confirmation among market participants. Exporters confidently buy corn at 152-155$ in the direction of seaports. Corn for delivery to Northern Italy traded at 196-198€ arrival June-July. New crop traded at 155€ FCA Chop October-December. This level of the price of the Western border gives parity for the port of October-December 155-157$.

- Food wheat prices have strengthened against the background of reduced stocks and stable demand from the outside market. In the ports, buyers bought wheat with a protein content of 11.5% at a price of $ 175 to $ 178 per ton, and fodder quality at a discount of $ 20 per ton. The new 11.5% wheat crop traded in the seaports for $178 with delivery in July-August. This price level provides parity within 171-173€ FCA Chop in July-September or -5€ MLU24 DAP northern Italy, taking into account the cost of logistics.

- Sunflower refiners intensified, which led to the strengthening of prices by 10-20$ per ton compared to last week. Bulgarian factories are experiencing a significant shortage of sunflower for processing in the off-season, which may lead to the early closure of some of them before the start of the rape harvest or the new sunflower crop.

- Ukrainian farmers expect a significant migration of crop areas from cereals to soybeans. Soybean harvest in 2024 is expected at 5.5 million tons, which is an increase of 15% compared to last year. As of March 27, Europe imported 9 million tons of soybeans, including 5 million tons from the United States and 2.5 million tons from Brazil. Imports from Ukraine amounted to only 680 thousand tons or 11%. Soybean prices are gradually declining in anticipation of reaching the bottom of the market in May.

Apr 12 - Argentina soy, corn forecasts trimmed as dryness and disease take toll
Argentina's Buenos Aires grains exchange cut its harvest estimates for the 2023/24 soybean and corn crops on Thursday, citing impacts from dry conditions and a disease spread by the leafhopper insect that has hit corn particularly hard. In a weekly report, the exchange lowered its forecast for the soybean crop from 52.5 million metric tons to 51 million tons, and reduced its projection for the corn harvest from 52 million tons to 49.5 million tons.

Apr 12 - US cuts forecast for corn stocks as more grain goes toward ethanol, feed
The U.S. Department of Agriculture trimmed its outlook for domestic corn ending stocks on Thursday as the government said more of the grain will be used to make ethanol biofuel and feed for farm animals. Projections for U.S. corn usage increased after futures prices fell to three-year lows this year, but global corn supplies are still considered plentiful and corn prices were trading lower after the report.

Apr 11 - Argentina exchange cuts corn forecast on 'unprecedented' spiroplasma damage
Argentina's Rosario grains exchange on Wednesday cut its forecast for the South American country's 2023/24 corn harvest to 50.5 million metric tons, citing "unprecedented" damage by the spiroplasma disease carried by leafhoppers. The exchange had previously forecast a 57 million ton harvest.

Apr 11 - Can analysts out-predict USDA, Conab on Brazil crop forecasts? - Braun
Market analysts once again seek a sizable cut to Brazil’s ongoing soybean harvest from the U.S. Department of Agriculture despite disappointment over the agency’s relatively modest trims in recent months. However, USDA’s track record in April has been better than the trade’s over the last few years, potentially easing doubts for the agency’s upcoming soy forecast.

Apr 10 - Brazil's coffee exports jump 37.8% in March, set quarterly record
Brazil's total coffee exports amounted to 4.29 million 60-kg bags in March, a 37.8% increase compared to the same period last year, a record for the month, industry group Cecafe said on Tuesday. Coffee shipments from the world's largest producer and exporter also hit an all-time high in the first quarter, Cecafe said.

Apr 10 - Russia seizes assets of agricultural firm AgroTerra
Russia has seized companies belonging to agricultural firm AgroTerra and placed them under temporary management, including some backed by Dutch investment firms, a decree signed by President Vladimir Putin showed late on Monday.  The move follows similar asset seizures involving Western firms including Carlsberg, Fortum and Uniper in retaliation for steps taken against Russian companies abroad.

Apr 09 - India's 2024 wheat output seen at 105 mln tons, 6.25% below govt estimates
India is expected to produce 105 million metric tons of wheat this year, a flour millers' body said on Monday, 6.25% lower than a government estimate.India, the world's biggest wheat consumer and grower after China, banned exports in 2022 and is relying on bumper harvests to bolster stocks and tame local prices that surged after dry weather shrivelled the crop in 2022 and 2023.

Apr 09 - Brazil's 2023/24 soybean harvest hits 78%, says AgRural
Brazil's soybean harvest for the 2023/24 cycle had reached 78% of the planted area as of last Thursday, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, up 4 percentage points from the previous week. The figure was below the 82% seen at the same time a year earlier.

Apr 08 - Biden administration's initial SAF subsidy model to raise climate hurdle for ethanol
The Biden administration will release a preliminary climate model for its sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) subsidy program in the coming weeks that is more restrictive than what the corn-based ethanol industry had expected, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. Under the preliminary model, which could be released by May 15, ethanol is not expected to automatically qualify as a feedstock in the SAF subsidy program unless the corn involved is sourced from farmers using one of just three sustainable agriculture techniques, the sources said.

Apr 08 - Rain and Chinese demand to boost Australia's wheat, barley planting
Australian farmers are likely to plant more wheat and barley this year, thanks to Chinese demand and wet weather on the country's east coast, while canola sowing should fall amid lower profit margins and dry conditions in the west, analysts said. Australia is the world's second largest wheat exporter and a key supplier of barley and canola, with the size of its harvests impacting global supplies and prices.

Apr 05 - Ukrainian Weekly Agri SPIKE_MARKET report

 Sold in a week· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr @157$→153$· DAP corn Mon. Italy, Apr-May @202€· wheat 11.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @177$->174$· wheat 10.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr-May @159$- Ukraine:· Corn exports in March amounted to 3.137 million tons, which is the largest monthly export since March 2023!· Wheat exports in March amounted to 2 million tons, which was the second consecutive month of the largest since March 2022!· The structure of agricultural exports in March was: corn - 3.137 million tons, wheat - 2.0 million tons, barley - 332 thousand tons, soybeans - 229 thousand tons, rape - 153 thousand tons, sunflower - 37 thousand tons, sunflower oil - 629 thousand tons, soybean oil - 31 thousand tons, cake and meal - 439 thousand tons.· The structure of agricultural exports by means of transport in February was: by sea transport through the Black Sea ports - 72%; by river transport through the Danube ports - 15%; by rail through the western border - 9%; by road - 2%; by other means of transport - 2%.- Corn prices : on Friday last week it was possible to sell corn for 160$, delivered to the seaports of Ukraine. And for corn with certification for deliveries to China could ask even 162-163$. Today it is difficult to find a demand above $ 152, and buyers are reluctant to buy grain in anticipation of stabilizing demand from the outside. The rumors about "wash-out" (China) by a significant proportion of Ukrainian corn have sown uncertainty among buyers about further purchases of corn from the Ukrainian market. Market players expected that China will buy about 2 million tons of corn from Ukraine this spring, of which 614 thousand tons were shipped in March.The market in Italy remains saturated for the coming months. It is impossible to find logistic slots for unloading in April and May for delivery of corn by rail. By train in June-August you can sell corn at a price of 195-197€, delivered to Northern Italy. The new crop is traded at the level of the current crop, delivered by trains to Italy. The new corn crop on the border of Ukraine and Europe was traded at 150-155€, loaded into European trains in October-December.- Wheat prices in the seaports reached a seasonal maximum against the background of rumors of a decrease in wheat exports from Russia. The record export rate of wheat from Ukraine for two consecutive months in February and March decreased the export potential of less than 2 million tons for the period from April to June.In the ports of Ukraine, it was possible to receive 172-178$ for food and 155-158$ for forage. The Italian market was traded between 200-205€ for food wheat delivered to northern Italy.- Sunflower prices remained unchanged in relation to last week. There is still a saturation of the domestic market for processing stocks from the previous purchase wave. The market participants predict a significant decrease in the profitability of sunflower processing next year due to an increase in domestic processing capacity in Ukraine to 19-20 million tons and a low level of raw material production.- Soya traded without much changes in all directions.

Apr 04 - Argentina's farm export revenues up 22% in March
Argentine farm exports rose to $1.5 billion in March, a 22% increase from the same month last year, oilseed industry and grains export chamber CIARA-CEC said on Wednesday. Revenues from grain exports, a key source of foreign currency as the country battles an economic crisis, have been surging since President Javier Milei devalued the local peso currency by more than 50% after taking office in December, in a boost to agricultural shipments.

Apr 04 - Ghana to raise cocoa farmgate price by up to 50%, Cocobod says
Ghana will raise the fixed farmgate price paid to cocoa farmers by up to 50% in an effort to share profits from rising global prices and deter farmers from bean smuggling, a spokesperson at the country's cocoa marketing board Cocobod said on Wednesday. Cocoa prices have more than tripled over the last year as disease and adverse weather in Ghana and neighbouring Ivory Coast pushed the global market to a third successive deficit.

Apr 03 - India asks traders to avoid buying new-season wheat to shore up state stocks
India has asked global and domestic trade houses to avoid buying new-season wheat from local farmers to help the government-backed Food Corporation of India (FCI) procure large quantities to shore up its depleting reserves, sources said. India, the world's biggest wheat consumer and grower after China, banned exports in 2022 and is keen to bolster stocks and tame prices that surged after dry weather hurt output in 2022 and 2023.

Apr 03 - Wet April outlook offers mixed benefits for US winter wheat, corn - Braun
U.S. winter wheat crop conditions have finally returned to more normal levels following two seasons marred with significant drought, boding well for harvest prospects. At the same time, U.S. farmers have begun planting their corn crop, though a wetter outlook for April could limit both the planting pace and potential acreage expansion.


Apr 02 - Wheat Reserves in Southern Russia Reach Record (SovEkon)
On March 1, wheat reserves in agricultural enterprises of the South, the key export region of the Russian Federation, amounted to 5.6 million tons, it follows from the review of "SovEkon". The supply of farmers in the South is 12% higher than last year's, significantly stronger than in other regions. Reserves surged to record levels amid limited wheat sales by farmers.

Wheat reserves in agricultural enterprises across Russia (excluding small ones) amount to 17.5 million tons, 1% higher than a year earlier. Wheat reserves in the Center amounted to 4.8 million tons, which is 12% lower than last year's figures; wheat reserves in the Volga region - 3.7 million tons, 4% higher than last year.

The South's reserves remain at record levels amid sluggish sales. From December to February, farmers in the South sold 3.6m tons of wheat, 25% less than a year earlier. The Center sold 3.7 million tons of wheat during the same period (+21% compared to last year), in the Volga region - 2.0 million tons (-10%).

Probably a significant proportion of farmers in the South are willing to store up until the new season in the hope of selling at a higher price. At the beginning of February, the price of grade 4 wheat in the South was 11,750 thousand rubles per ton, 1,050 rubles less than a year earlier.

An additional factor could be the relatively sluggish demand for near-term grains by exporters until recently. Many of them in recent months actively bribed grain in the non-southern regions with shipment in 1-2 months, which gave a lower price in the port.

The willingness of agricultural producers to limit sales until the new season will support the Russian and global markets.


Apr 02 - US rates winter wheat crop best in years in first report
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in its first weekly crop progress report of the 2024 growing season rated 56% of the U.S. winter wheat crop in good-to-excellent condition, below an average of trade expectations but still the highest for this time of year since 2019. While the winter wheat harvest remains months away, the improved crop prospects underscore how global grain supplies are shifting to surplus from the shortages of the past several years caused by unfavorable weather, the coronavirus pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine war.

Apr 02 - Brazil's 2023/24 soybean harvest hits 74%, AgRural says
Brazil's soybean harvest for the 2023/24 cycle had reached 74% of the planted area as of last Thursday, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, up 5 percentage points from the previous week. The figure was below the 76% seen at the same time a year earlier.


Apr 01 - US corn plantings seen 5% lower in 2024, soy acres higher, USDA says
U.S. farmers are planning to cut corn plantings by more than expected in 2024 while expanding soybean seedings, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said on Thursday, as low crop prices and high input costs have many growers looking to cut expenses. Prices for both crops are hovering near three-year lows as global supplies swell with rising South American harvests and slowing demand from top importer China.


Apr 01 - Grain ship loaded by Russia's TD RIF leaves Black Sea port after quality clearance, source says
A vessel that was loaded by TD RIF, one of Russia's key grain exporters, has left a Black Sea port after its cargo was certified as being free of pests and disease, a source in the company told Reuters on Saturday. Several grain vessels loaded by the company have remained idle in the country's Black Sea ports for more than 10 days, amid a row with Russia's agricultural watchdog over the quality of the grain they are carrying.

 

Mar 29 - Ukrainian Agri Weekly SPIKE_MARKET report

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch-flower @155$→156$→157$->158$
· corn (China) DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Apr @160$
· DAP corn Mon. Italy, May @195€
· feed wheat DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch-flower @153$→156$
· barley DAP Danube, Ukraine, Apr @155$
· DAP sunflower Mon. Bulgaria, birch-Apr @453$

- Ukraine:
· Representatives of the government and business of Ukraine hold active negotiations with Poland on finding a compromise related to the transit of Ukrainian agricultural products through Poland;
- Europe:
· The European Commission forecasts the lowest crop of soft wheat in Europe in the last four seasons, which is expected at 120.8 million tons, which is 4% less than this season and is the lowest level since 2020/21.

- Corn prices continued their increase throughout the chain from Ukraine to the final sales market. Traders in Ukrainian ports bought corn within 155-158 US dollars depending on the delivery period. The active demand for Chinese-certified corn has created a premium of up to $3 per ton. With delivery to the markets of Italy and Spain, it was possible to sell corn within 208-210 US dollars depending on the period and direction. Across the western border, corn was traded at 195-198 euros, delivered by the European train to Northern Italy. The new crop is traded at the current crop level, delivered by trains to Italy.

- delivery period. In the maritime chain to European markets, wheat prices also rose on the basis of FOB and CIF. Food wheat under FOB conditions was traded at US$192-194.

- The saturation of the domestic market of inventory processing for the next months caused the correction of sunflower prices by the processors. Prices decreased to 335-345 dollars in dollar terms without VAT, delivered for processing. On the foreign market, prices remained almost unchanged, which increases the attractiveness of exports for manufacturers.

- Soybean prices have increased in all directions. Buyers in Ukrainian ports paid for soybeans GMO in the range of 405-410 dollars, for soyno GMO paid a premium of up to $ 5 per ton. The European market resumed activity of soybean purchases. The destination to Italy is in demand at 430-440 euros for soybean GMO and 440-450 euros for soybean NE GMO. The direction to Hungary allows you to implement soybean NE GMO at levels of 440-445 euros with delivery by road transport.


Mar 28 - Brazil soybean crop forecast rises driven by area expansion
Brazilian soybean production will total 156.5 million metric tons this year, an agribusiness consultancy said on Wednesday after surveying fields nationally and estimating planted area expansions in the world's largest producer and exporter. In the middle of Agroconsult's expedition, which started in January, it had projected production at 152.2 million tons, citing climate uncertainty in key producing regions affecting Brazil's output potential.

Mar 28 - Dry weather to favor Argentina's soy, corn harvests
Dry weather in Argentina's main agricultural regions over the next week will benefit the start of soy and corn harvests after recent heavy rains, the Buenos Aires Grains Exchange said on Wednesday. Argentina is one of the world's top exporters of soybean oil, soybean meal and corn. Abundant rainfall in the first half of March left fields muddy, keeping farmers out of the fields. But "a large part of the Pampas (agricultural) region will receive scarce (rains), with some pockets seeing moderate amounts," the exchange said in its weekly weather report.


Mar 28 - Malaysian AM & PM Cash Market Prices for Palm Oil Unavailable
- Data for a.m. and p.m. Malaysian cash market prices for palm oil are unavailable due to a holiday (
Nuzul Al-Quran)


Mar 27 - China’s weekly soybean crush level drops for third consecutive week (CNGOIC)
- China’s soybean crush volume decreased to 1.53 million tonnes in the week to Friday March 22, a decline of 6.71%, or 110,000 tonnes, from the previous week, according to data published this week by the China National Grain and Oil Information Centre (CNGOIC). This marked the third straight week of declines for the weekly crush volume, with some crushers having suspended operations due to a lack of soybeans or the need to examine their machines. The level was similar to that of a year ago and the three-year average, the CNGOIC said.

- The CNGOIC estimates there will be 6.6 million tonnes for the whole of the month, including 5 million tonnes crushed between March 1 and March 22. Soybean stocks at major crushers dropped by 12.47% from the previous week to 3.37 million tonnes as of March 22, with the level also representing a 44.84% decline from a month ago and a 52.13% drop from a recent high of 7.04 million tonnes in mid-January.

- Imported soybean arrivals are expected to reach 6.5 million tonnes for March, similar to the same period last year, while monthly soybean arrivals are expected to rise to 10 million in the second quarter, helped by concentrated dispatches of South American beans in mid to late April, the CNGOIC said.

- Soymeal stocks also continued to drop, reaching 440,000 tonnes as of March 22. This marked a 22.81% decline from the previous week and a 15.38% drop from a year ago.

- Soyoil stocks were at 740,000 tonnes as of March 22, a 2.53% drop from the previous week but a 4.05% rise from a year ago. Soyoil prices have increased since February due in large part to rising palm oil prices and declining soyoil stocks. Due to the tight supply of soybeans, soyoil prices will likely remain firm this month, although the situation could change with more arrivals of soybeans next month, the CNGOIC said.

 

Mar 27 - EU 2023/24 soft wheat exports down 2% at 22.8 mln T by March 23
Soft wheat exports from the European Union since the start of the 2023/24 season in July had reached 22.8 million metric tons by March 23, down 2% compared with 23.2 million a year earlier, data published by the European Commission showed on Tuesday. EU barley exports totalled 4.2 million tons, down 12% against 4.8 million tons in the corresponding period in 2022/23, while EU maize imports were at 13.2 million tons, 38% below the year-earlier 21.5 million tons.

Mar 27 - Heavy US corn market seeks to avoid acreage bomb on Thursday - Braun
Grain market analysts predict U.S. corn plantings will fall from last year’s decade high in favor of soybeans, which may present better profitability prospects for farmers. But U.S. farmers’ planting intentions have been notoriously hard to predict in recent years, and crop prices are much lower than both a year ago and last fall, when many producers make planting decisions.


Mar 26 - Large areas of EU winter grain in mediocre condition, monitor says
Winter grain crops are in mediocre condition in large parts of the European Union despite fair spring weather, EU crop monitoring service MARS said on Monday. "Since autumn, large parts of western, northern and eastern Europe experienced excessively wet conditions, which negatively affected the sowing, emergence and development of winter crops," MARS said in a monthly report.

Mar 26 - Brazil's 2023/24 soybean harvest hits 69%, says AgRural
Brazil's soybean harvest for the 2023/24 cycle had reached 69% of the planted area as of last Thursday, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, up 6 percentage points from the previous week. The figure was slightly below the 70% seen at the same time a year earlier.

Mar 25 - Russian farmers weigh cuts to wheat planting as profitability falls
Russian farmers say they are considering reducing wheat acreage in favour of higher-margin crops like soybeans and peas as low global prices, rising input costs and continued export duties cut into harvests' profitability. Russia, the world's largest wheat exporter, expects a bumper grain harvest of 147 million tons in 2024 and analysts said they did not see potential cuts as a significant threat to the 2024 crop, in which higher-yielding winter wheat plays a key role.

Mar 25 - Pricey US sugar imports estimated to rise sharply, says broker
The U.S. is projected to import in the current crop year (October-September) the largest amount of high-duty sugar in at least six years due mostly to falling supplies from trade partner Mexico, broker Czarnikow said in a report on Friday. The U.S. is estimated to import in 2023/24 around 750,000 metric tons of sugar that will be taxed at the highest level of import duties: $360 per ton, or 16.33 cents per pound, said Czarnikow.


Mar 22 - European Commission proposes tariff increase on Russian grains (AgriCensus)
- The European Commission (EC) on Friday March 22 proposed an increase in tariffs on imports of cereals, oilseeds and grain products into the EU from Russia and Belarus. Depending on the product, the tariffs will increase to either €95 ($102.66) per tonne or to an ad valorem duty of 50%. In addition, Russia and Belarus will no longer have access to any of the EU's WTO quotas on grain that offer better tariff treatment for some products.
“We propose the imposition of tariffs on these Russian imports to mitigate the growing risk to our markets and our farmers,” EC president Ursula Von der Leyen said.

- Among the EC's stated objectives is the prevention of EU market destabilization, which farmers across EU countries have protested since the start of the year. The tariffs are also aimed at preventing the export of illegally appropriated grain produced in Ukrainian territories from being profitably sold into the EU. While the tariffs would impact the sale of Russian grains into EU markets, the proposal would continue to allow Russian grains' unhindered transit through the EU, storage in EU customs warehouses, transportation on EU vessels, and the provision of insurance and financing services for the trading of Russian grain.

- Russia exported 4.2 million tonnes of cereals, oilseeds and derived products — worth €1.3 billion — to the EU in 2023, according to the EC. Further data from the EC shows that Russia is the second-largest supplier of sunflower meal to the EU this marketing year after Ukraine, while Russia's share in total supply of sunflower meal to the EU varies at 21.50-38.00%. The proposed introduction of an import duty of 50% on oilseeds and their processed products may lead to a change in trade flows for Black Sea-origin sunflower and rapeseed meals, according to market sources, due to the large quantities these countries export to the EU.

- In the 2022-2023 marketing year, imports of Russian wheat into the EU totaled 363,486 tonnes, less than 1% of total imports. From July 2023 to January 2024, Russian wheat supply increased to 710,834 tonnes, or 3% of the total, according to available customs data. For a large part of the 2023-2024 marketing year, wheat imports from Russia were durum, accounting for 424,504 tonnes (13%) of the 3.2 million tonnes imported in total. At the same time, the share of EU destinations for Russian wheat exports was just 2% for July 2023 to January 2024.

- EU corn imports from Russia were even less significant, with just 388,754 tonnes imported in the 2022-2023 marketing year — less than 1% of the 202,401 tonnes imported so far in the 2023-2024 marketing year.

- Finally, barley supply from Russia was minimal, with only 10 tonnes imported by the EU in the 2022-2023 marketing year and 54,707 tonnes in 2023-2024 — both well below 1%.

Around 5-6% of Russian corn and 1% of Russian barley has been exported to the EU in the 2023-2024 marketing year.


Mar 22 - Ukainian Agri SPIKE_MARKET weekly report

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch-flower @151$→152$
· soy NE-GMO ISCC DAP center. Hungary, Apr-May @445€
· sunflower DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @15'900 UAH with VAT

- Ukraine:
· Export of grain, oil and processed products at 15.03 amounted to: corn - 1386 thousand tons, wheat - 1045 thousand tons, barley - 245 thousand tons, soybean - 145 thousand tons, rapeseed - 57 thousand tons, sunflower - 30 thousand tons, sunflower oil - 318 thousand tons, soybean oil - 14 thousand tons, cake and meal - 136 thousand tons.
- Europe:
· As of 28.02, imports of agricultural products to the EU in the current season amounted to: wheat - 8.3 million tons (against 7.8 million tons last year for the same period), corn - 11.9 million tons (compared to 19.9 million tons), soybean - 7.9 million tons (compared to 8 million tons), rape - 3.7 million tons (compared to 5.7 million tons), sunflower - 0.457 million tons (compared to 1.9 million tons).
· COCERAL published a forecast for the production of cereals and oilseeds in 2024 in the EU27: soft wheat - 123.2 million tons against 125.9 million tons last year; barley - 52.8 million tons against 48.7 million tons; corn - 64.3 million tons against 62.4 million tons; rapeseed - 19.1 million tons against 20 million tons; sunflower - 10.6 million tons against 10.5 million tons; soybean - 3.2 million tons against 3.1 million tons.

- The resumption of demand in the final markets for corn and a decline in the sea caused the strengthening of prices in Ukrainian ports. Corn was traded above 150$ towards seaports. The Danube ports bought corn within 155-157$. The decrease in European rail freight to the off-season low has supported corn prices on the western border. Corn was traded in the range of 145-150€, loaded in the European train for the period April-May. The new corn crop is safely traded at 145-148€ for the period from October to July.

- Feed wheat prices are at corn level and traded within 150-152$ per ton in the Black Sea ports. The premium for food wheat in ports is stored at 15$ per ton of wheat with a protein of 11.5%. Italy with delivery in may-june bought wheat with a protein of 11% within 190-195€. Discussions of agreements on a new crop of wheat in the direction of Europe are stopped by uncertainty about the import regime for Ukraine.

- The price of sunflower continues the growing trend. Processors are trying to provide their own capacities with raw materials for the next 3-4 months. Stable oil prices and devaluation of the hryvnia to 3% last week have significantly increased hryvnia prices and supported the intensification of sunflower trade in Ukraine.

- Soybean prices have risen to 10€ per ton in all directions. The new crop is traded at a discount of up to 20 euros per ton compared to last year's harvest.


Mar 22 - Argentina grains exchange trims corn forecast citing heat wave, disease
Argentina's Buenos Aires Grains Exchange on Thursday cut its forecasts for the 2023/24 season's corn harvest to 54 million metric tons, citing a February heat wave and damage from the spiroplasma bacteria. The exchange previously predicted a corn harvest of 56.5 million tons, which would have been a record high, but the new estimate would bring output below the 55.5 million tons produced in 2018/19.

Mar 22 - Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC) loses $60 million on Russian divesture, maintains presence in Ukraine (AgriCensus)

- The Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC) reported a $60 million loss for 2023 amid the deconsolidation of its Russian business, but it will maintain its presence in Ukraine, the company said in its 2023 financial results. The loss was attributed to the divesture of its business in Russia. On April 3, 2023, the company stopped grain exports from Russia and started to sell its business and assets in the country “on terms that satisfy the requirements of the Russian authorities.” This follows a loss in 2022 linked to the development and construction of a deep-sea terminal for agricultural commodities in Taman in southern Russia, which LDC had entered into a joint venture with Infragos Consortium in 2012.

- At the same time, LDC has maintained its presence in Ukraine, with the report saying that company “has no intention” to discontinued its business in the country for the foreseeable future.
“In Ukraine, all property, plant and equipment held are in a condition to run, and management has no intention to discontinue the business in the foreseeable future. Additionally, subsidiaries in Ukraine can access financing to meet their short-term financial obligations, and cash is not restricted,” the report said. LDC held total assets of $211 million and total liabilities of $126 million in the country.

Overview
- The report also showed that the net sales dropped by 15.5% in 2023 year compared with 2022, a year with significant increases, amid a decrease in global commodity prices. LDC’s net sales dropped to $50.6 billion in 2023, while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization declined by 5% to $2.222 billion compared with 2022. Net income, however, was nearly stable at $1.013 million compared with $1.006 million in 2022.
“Market volatility decreased in 2023, compared with 2022, as logistical bottlenecks eased, while the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis, export quotas in India, the devaluation of the Argentine peso, and concerns about the slowdown in global growth and uncertain crop size prospects continued to cause disruptions,” the report said.

Crush capacity investments
- LDC will continue to investments into its processing capacities, in particular adding a 1.3 million tonnes of crushing capacity at oilseeds processing facility in Zhangjiagang, Jiangsu Province, China, along with completing the first phrase of construction at its joint venture Fuling Food Industrial Park in Guangzhou.

- In Canada, LDC has doubled its annual crush capacity in canola processing complex in Yorkton, Saskatchewan, while in US, it announced construction on a soybean processing plant in Upper Sandusky, Ohio, which will begin in 2024.

According to LDC, this development strengthening its core merchandizing capabilities with additional capacity to originate and process US soy into value-added products, and will provide opportunity to participate in renewable energy feedstock markets and help meet growing demand for biofuels.

 

Mar 22 - Grain purchases to the state fund of the Russian Federation stopped on March 7 will resume on March 27 (Interfax)

 

- Grain purchases to the state intervention fund, which stopped on March 7, will resume on March 27. This is reported in the trading schedule posted on the website of the National Commodity Exchange (NTB, part of the Moscow Exchange group).
- Next week's auction is also scheduled for March 28 and 29.
- The Ministry of Agriculture explained the interruption in the auction by the fact that the OZK (United Grain Company, the state agency for procurement and commodity intervention in the grain market) had to complete the competitive procedures for selecting the exchange for the next three-year period. As reported, last week the government allocated an additional 7 billion rubles to increase grain purchases to the state fund.

In total, from December 11, 2023 to March 7, 2024, the fund purchased 845.1 thousand tons of grain for 12 billion rubles. In particular, the state has purchased 16,335 thousand tons of wheat of the 3rd class of harvest in 2022 (by 245,567 million rubles), 412,965 thousand tons of wheat of the 3rd class of harvest in 2023 (by 6,3 billion rubles), 57,51 thousand tons of wheat of the 4th class of harvest in 2022 (by 844,4 million rubles), 322,65 thousand tons of wheat of the 4th class of harvest in 203 (203 by 4.2 billion rubles), 4.185 thousand tons of rye of the 2022 harvest (by 46.49 million rubles) and 31.455 thousand tons of rye of the 2023 harvest (by 339.3 million rubles).

It is planned to purchase 2 million tons of grain into the fund during the current interventions. Previous procurement interventions were conducted from August to December 2022, during which the fund was formed in the amount of 3 million tons. It is expected that the state fund's grain reserves will be used for the needs of the flour-milling and baking industry.


Mar 21 - Brazil, US switch roles as China’s top soybean, corn supplier for Jan-Feb (AgriCensus)

- China’s soybean imports from Brazil in the first two months of 2024 surged by over 200% from a year ago to 6.96 million tonnes, figures from the country’s General Administration of Customs (GACC) showed on Wednesday March 20. This formed 53.4% of the total 13.04 million tonnes imported by China in January-February, and contrasts sharply against the scenario a year ago when Brazilian beans formed just 15.5% of China’s soybean imports at 2.24 million tonnes and US soybeans were the top supplier at 9.84 million tonnes of the total 14.4 million tonnes imported.

- A record harvest leading to attractively priced beans saw Brazilian soybeans getting snapped up by Chinese buyers in a period that is typically dominated by US soybeans.

- As such, China’s soybean imports from the US in January-February this year fell by 49.6% to 4.96 million tonnes, with its import share falling to 38.03% from 68.2% a year ago.

- China is also expected to see more soybeans from South America arriving in coming months when the soybean harvest takes place in Brazil and Argentina, with estimates from the China National Grain and Oil Information Centre (CNGOIC) pegging soybean imports for March at 6.5 million tonnes and averaging around 10 million tonnes each month between April-June.

- A similar switch of roles played out for China’s corn imports in January-February, with Brazil taking the US’ position as top supplier for the period. China cleared 4.1 million tonnes of corn from Brazil out of the total 6.19 million tonnes imported. This marks a 178% increase from the same period a year ago, where Brazilian corn formed 28% of corn imported in the first two months of 2023. Meanwhile corn imports from the US fell by 67.4% on the year to 766,989 tonnes, coming in behind volumes from Ukraine which were recorded at 1.14 million tonnes.

Note: China’s soybean imports from the US for January-February 2023 were revised down to 9.84 million tonnes from the 11.59 million tonnes reported in March last year.


Mar 21 - Argentina downpour 'damaging' for soy and corn, weather analysts say
A new front of heavy rains over key grains regions of Argentina could be "very damaging" to the South American country's current soy and corn crops and could dent production, a local grains exchange and a weather expert said on Wednesday. Argentina, one of the world's top two exporters of soybean oil and meal, and the third largest for corn, has seen strong rains well above normal levels so far this month, initially boosting dry soils but now starting to saturate farmland.

Mar 21 - Coceral cuts 2024 wheat crop forecast for EU and UK due to heavy rains
Grain trade association Coceral on Wednesday cut its forecast for this year's soft wheat output in the European Union and Britain by 5.4 million metric tons due to damage caused by heavy rainfall in the region. In its second forecast for the next harvest, Coceral projected the EU and UK soft wheat harvest in 2024 at 134.1 million tons, down from 139.5 million estimated in December, and 4% below last year's 140.0 million tons.


Mar 20 - Export quotations of Russian wheat are growing for the first time since January (Sovecon)

- Export prices of Russian wheat with protein 12.5% last week rose $2 to $201-204/t FOB, SOVEkon experts estimated. Since early January, Russian wheat prices have declined steadily, losing $44. Prices rose on the back of recovering competitiveness of Russian wheat and revived demand. Competitiveness of Russian wheat is at a high level compared to European wheat. Last week, French wheat with 11% protein was offered at $211/t FOB, $8.5 more expensive than Russian wheat. In January, European wheat was $1.50 cheaper than Russian wheat. Since the beginning of March, the stock price of European wheat rose from $208/t to $218/t.

- Sales of Russian wheat are growing on the back of a rebound in import demand. Contracts for the sale of Russian wheat on March 19 totaled 2.7m tons, compared to 2.0m tons in January. Some buyers have not yet closed their needs in the coming months. Harvesting of new crops in North Africa will begin in 1-2 months.

- The likelihood that export prices for Russian wheat have passed through seems high. So far, however, this has not translated into robust growth over the longer term. Global equities remain volatile amid strong stocks in EU and US.


Mar 20 - China's soybean imports from Brazil jump 211% in first two months
China's soybean imports from Brazil surged 211% in the first two months of 2024 compared with a year ago, data showed on Tuesday, as strong harvest and competitive pricing in the South American producer outpaced the United States' market share. The world's top buyer of soybeans, China brought in 6.96 million metric tons of the oilseed from Brazil, up from 2.24 million tons in the same period last year.

Mar 20 - EU agrees new limits on Ukraine farm imports
The European Union reached a provisional agreement to grant Ukrainian food producers tariff-free access to its markets until June 2025, albeit with new limits on imports of grains. The European Commission proposed in January to suspend duties and quotas on Ukrainian farm produce for a further year, with an "emergency brake" for poultry, eggs and sugar leading to tariffs if imports exceed the average levels of 2022 and 2023.


Mar 19 - Soy dollar rumors have little effect on soybean sales in Argentina (AgriCensus)

- Rumors of a new soy dollar in Argentina had little effect on soybean farm sales when compared with the previous rounds of the special exchange program, with farmers continuing to sell instead of waiting for a new program to pay production costs. The Argentinian government has denied plans for a new soy dollar exchange program after the rumors began a few days ago.

- There was a slight reduction in sales after the rumors gained strength in the country, with sales dropping to 118,000 tonnes on Wednesday versus the peak of 161,000 tonnes on Tuesday March 12, data from Sio Granos shows. The platform, which gathers information on grain sales in the country, shows 589,000 tonnes of soybeans were sold last week, including cash sales and price fixation, surpassing the best weekly volumes in December, before the massive devaluation of the peso. Previously, sales fell significantly after rumors of a dollar program began to spread because farmers would save beans to sell at a better price.
“The sales we are seeing are physical soybeans that the producer has from the last crop, the producer is selling to cover the need for operating cash even with low prices,” analyst Javier Preciado Patiño told Fastmarkets.

- The new crop harvest will start in April and Argentina is expected to recover from last year's losses due to drought and harvest around 50 million tonnes. Patiño believes that there are more soybeans available from 2022/23 than initially expected and the market is responding to that offer.
“Possibly, the harvest is closer to 25 million tonnes than to 21 million tonnes,” he added.

- The first is the official estimate from Argentina’s secretariat of agriculture, livestock and fisheries, SAGyP while the second is the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange Bage estimate, while Rosario Grain Exchange BCR sees the crop at 20 million tonnes.

Soy dollar 5
- Although the government says it does not plan to launch a new round of the exchange rate program similar to those implemented over the past two years, analysts say the measure would be necessary to stimulate sales.
“The government will need to implement a soy dollar to speed up the dollar inflow in Argentina as there is no other source able to add $15 billion to stabilize the reserves and give stability to the economy,” Patiño said.

- Currently, an exporter dollar program is in force, which is a mixture of the official dollar and the financial dollar, a continuation of measures adopted by the previous government. But sales have not picked up noticeably as they did in the previous soy dollar programs.
“I believe producers are not selling much because of the low prices, because they may be waiting for a change in the dollar-export exchange rate and because of the great economic uncertainty that makes their grain the safest form of security,” Paulina Lescano, agricultural engineer and specialist in agricultural markets, told Fastmarkets.
“A new soy dollar or a strong devaluation would be a way to stimulate selling. I do not think this is good for the Argentinian economy, but I believe it would make some producers sell soybeans to take advantage of the preferential exchange,” she added.


Mar 19 - Weekly USDA wheat ratings improve in Kansas, Texas; Oklahoma declines
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service in a weekly crop report on Monday rated 55% of the winter wheat in top producer Kansas in good to excellent condition, up from 53% the previous week. For Texas, the No. 2 winter wheat state by planted area, the USDA rated 46% of the crop as good to excellent, up from 44% a week ago. For Oklahoma, the USDA rated 61% of the crop as good to excellent, down from 65% last week. For Colorado, the USDA rated 65% of the crop as good to excellent, up from 56% in the state's previous report, which was released on Feb. 26.

Mar 19 - EU to impose tariffs on Russian grain imports, FT reports
The European Union is preparing to levy tariffs on grain imports from Russia and Belarus to placate farmers and some member states, the Financial Times reported citing people familiar with the plans. The European Commission is in coming days expected to impose a duty of 95 euros per tonne on cereals from Russia and Belarus, FT said, adding that tariffs of 50% would also be placed on oil seeds and derived products.


Mar 18 - Russia's drone attack on Odesa damages agribusinesses, Ukraine says
Russian air attacks damaged agricultural enterprises and destroyed several industrial buildings in the Black Sea port of Odesa overnight, Ukraine's forces said on Sunday. Russia launched 16 drones and seven missiles, Ukraine's air force posted on the Telegram messaging app. Fourteen drones were destroyed over the Odesa region.

Mar 18 - Funds cover CBOT soy and corn shorts, snapping bean selling streak: Braun
Speculators covered short positions in Chicago corn and soybeans last week, chipping away at their still-massive bearish bets as futures continued climbing off multi-year lows. In the week ended on March 12, money managers cut their net short position in CBOT soybean futures and options to 155,137 contracts from a record 171,999 in the prior week, predominantly on short covering. This was the first week with funds as net bean buyers in 17 weeks, ending a record-long selling stretch.


Mar 15 - Ukraine Agri Weekly SPIKE_MARKET report

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @147$→148$→149$
· corn 2024 FCA border of Ukraine, yellow-birch @146€
· wheat 11.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch-flower @165.5$
· wheat 11.0pro DAP mon. Italy, May @MLK24
· sunflower DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch-flower @14'800 UAH14'850 UAH→15'100 UAH with VAT

- Ukraine:
· The cost of railway logistics is at the lowest level in the current season.
· As of 13.03, Ukraine exported 353 thousand tons to China in March, including 272 thousand tons of corn.
- Europe:
· The cost of railway logistics on the route Chop - Mon. Italy in the period of October-March is contracted in the range of 40-45€.
· The European Commission refused to return import-tariff quotas for Ukrainian grain.
· The European Commission has been given the authority to respond quickly to any significant disorders in the European market of particularly sensitive groups of products, namely poultry, eggs and sugar. If imports of these products exceed the average volumes of 2022 and 2023, tariffs will be re-introduced for these products.

- Prices for corn in Ukrainian ports reach $ 150 per ton. Sellers hold this target level for sale, which makes buyers gradually equalize with it. On the western border of Ukraine, corn of the new crop sold at 146€ loaded into the European train from October to March.

- Food wheat with a protein content of 11.5% was traded in the direction of the Black Sea ports at a price of 164$ to 166$ per ton. The price of feed wheat remains at the level of corn with delivery in March-April. The new wheat crop was traded in the direction of northern Italy at a price of 192€ to 194€ per ton with a protein content of 11%.

- Sunflower prices are fixed in all directions. Processors in Ukraine paid for sunflower 330-350$ per ton, depending on the place of delivery and oil content. In the Bulgarian market, the price of sunflower also increased by an average of $ 10 per ton.

- The price of soy remains at the level of last week. The new soybean crop without GMO was traded at 420-430€ DAP Italy/Germany or 80-90 cents to the November futures on soybeans on the Chicago Stock Exchange.


Mar 15 - Wheat shipments postponed to China, including Australian origin (AgriCensus)

- Some deliveries of Australian wheat bound for China are being postponed, in addition to US wheat cancellations reported recently and talk of deferred shipments for French and Canadian wheat origins, trade sources told Agricensus Thursday. Talk of possible delays or even cancellations of Australian-origin wheat appeared in the market on Tuesday, with some of the trade sources saying the trigger might be some companies starting to offer wheat at below market prices.

- But according to industry sources Agricensus spoke with, it is more a case of delaying shipments into China rather than cancelling them, and this process started already some time ago, with a few sources mentioning January as the time when delays began.
“I got some confirmation now that some cargoes are getting rolled but I have not yet heard of them being cancelled,” a local trader said. “I think it has been happening for a while, but there has been some more recently. They trying to roll/defer as much as they can because of the slow domestic market,” they continued.
“No cancellations, just request for later shipment; this has been going on for a while,” a second trader said, while a third noted that exports to China were very slow.

No major effect has been seen in the market following the talk of delays and cancellations, with trade sources saying that for now they only see a lesser interest from Chinese buyers for new purchases.

The talk appeared after 504,000 tonnes of US SRW wheat cargoes were cancelled to China, but trade sources said that they had been expecting this to happen.

There was also talk of deferred French wheat cargo shipments, which is also not new as this first began back in November 2023, when it was suggested that exporters had been asked to postpone volumes scheduled for December loading until January or February.

Customs data showed that in December French wheat exports to China amounted to 690,915 tonnes, and in January to 609,884 tonnes, while in the past few years, January figures were significantly lower.

There has also been market talk of deferred deliveries for Canadian origin, reportedly in February, but at the same time, some sources said China had continued to take volumes from Canada after this.

China is among the biggest wheat importers in the world, with 11 million tonnes of imports expected in 2023/24, according to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), while from July to January, 6.24 million tonnes had already been imported, the bulk of which came from Australia.


Mar 15 - IGC sees record global grains crop in 2024/25
The International Grains Council (IGC) on Thursday forecast a record global grain crop in the 2024/25 season, reinforcing concerns about a global glut. The inter-governmental body, issuing its first full set of supply and demand projections for the 2024/25 season, saw global grains production rising to a record 2.332 billion metric tons from the prior season's 2.304 billion.

Mar 15 - Soil moisture for Argentina's soybean crop improves after rains
The percentage of Argentine soybean plantings with optimal-to-excellent soil moisture grew to 77% in the last week, boosted by recent rains, the Buenos Aires Grains Exchange said on Thursday. Argentina is one of the world's top exporters of processed soybeans, and the exchange estimates the 2023/24 harvest at 52.5 million metric tons.


Mar 14 - Chinese buyers cancel or postpone Australian wheat buys amid global oversupply
Chinese wheat importers have cancelled or postponed about one million metric tons of Australian wheat imports, trade sources with direct knowledge of the deals said, as growing world stockpiles drag down prices. The moves come after the U.S. government reported cancellation of more than 500,000 metric tons of U.S. wheat exports last week to China, the world's No. 1 buyer, with international prices trading close three and a half year lows.

Mar 13 - Argentina downpour drenches crop fields, flash floods in Buenos Aires
Intense rains in Argentina are beginning to leave the soil too wet in key agricultural areas, which could also make it harder to harvest the 2023/24 soybean crop, a climate specialist said on Tuesday, though the conditions could be good for the 2024/25 wheat crop. The heavy rains also caused flooding in parts of the city of Buenos Aires, with residents wading through up to waist-high waters and storms bringing "a lightning strike every second," meteorologists said.
 
Mar 13 - Australian farmer confidence bounces back after rains douse dry pastures
Widespread rainfall and improving livestock prices have lifted confidence levels among Australian farmers to their highest in two years, a survey showed. Australia is one of the world's biggest agricultural exporters. Farmers became extremely negative during 2023 as an El Nino weather phenomenon brought dry conditions that hammered crop yields and livestock markets.


Mar 12 - Brazil's 2024 soy sales hit 54.5 mln tons as farmers hesitate
Sales of the 2023/24 soybean harvest in Brazil reached 36.6% of projected production, behind the historical average for the period but slightly ahead of last year at this time, according to agribusiness consultancy Safras & Mercado on Monday. Based on Safras' estimated soybean output for Brazil this season, farmers have sold an estimated 54.5 million metric tons to buyers like exporters and domestic processors.

Mar 12 - Black Sea grain exports beating early market ideas by substantial degree -Braun
Ukraine, particularly in the last few months, has been exporting much more grain than anyone expected despite more than two years of war with neighboring Russia. This, combined with two bumper Russian wheat crops, has led to an enormous surplus of Black Sea grain shipments over the last two seasons compared with what was initially predicted, a surplus that could easily replace entire export programs of other top suppliers.


Mar 11 - USDA cuts Brazil soy crop further, remains above private estimates
The U.S. Department of Agriculture lowered its forecast for Brazil's soybean crop further on Friday, but it remains above many private estimates. Large supplies in South America and lackluster Chinese demand for U.S. soybeans loom over U.S. soy futures, despite reduced projections for Brazilian output due to adverse weather. Prices last week fell to their lowest level in more than three years at the Chicago Board of Trade.

Mar 11 - Funds ink all-time bearish soybean bets off unprecedented selling streak -Braun
Speculators have been selling Chicago-traded soybeans since mid-November, and that finally culminated in a record position last week as global stockpiles swell. In the week ended March 5, money managers lifted their net short position in CBOT soybean futures and options to a record 171,999 contracts from 160,653 a week earlier. That replaced the prior all-time net short of 168,835 contracts from May 2019.


Mar 08 - Ukraine Grain SPIKE_MARKET weekly report

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @143$→144$→146$→145$
· wheat 11.0pro DAP mon. Italy, May @MLK24
· wheat 11.0pro 2024 DAP Mon. Italy, yellow-Dec @MLZ24-5€
· feed wheat DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch-flower @142$
· barley DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @151$
· soybean GMO DAP Danube, Ukraine, birch @425$
· sunflower IN DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @16'000 UAH with VAT

- Ukraine:
· In February, the agricultural export index became the second absolute record in wartime - 7.3 million tons (the largest export was only 7.45 million tons in March 2023).
· The structure of agricultural exports in February is as follows: corn - 2.9 million tons, wheat - 2.5 million tons, barley - 206 thousand tons, soybeans - 284 thousand tons, rape - 259 thousand tons, sunflower - 34 thousand tons, sunflower oil - 590 thousand tons, soybean oil - 30 thousand tons, cake and meal - 516 thousand tons.
· The structure of agricultural exports by means of transport in February was: by sea transport through the Black Sea ports - 70%; by river transport through the Danube ports - 16%; by rail through the western border - 10%; by road - 2%; by other means of transport - 2%.

- Corn prices were found by sellers all over the supply chain. The CIF market in Spain was strengthened by 3-4$ and traded at 200-202$ with delivery in May-June. The reduction of freight costs by an average of 1-2$ per ton allowed to improve purchasing prices for exporters in Ukraine. In the ports of Ukraine corn was traded at 143-146$ DAP. The remaining export potential of corn in Ukraine is estimated at 8.3 million tons, taking into account the expected export in March. This is approximately 1.6 million tons of exports every month from April to August. Meanwhile, the average export rate of corn remains at 2.5 million tons per month.

- Feed wheat equalized at the price with corn. The remaining export potential of wheat in Ukraine is estimated at 3 million tons after the March export.
The new crop began to crush and actively traded at the levels of the old harvest. Sellers on the western border actively traded a new crop tied to the MATIF exchange, which is a common practice in the European market. Sales in the direction of Mon. Italy for the period of July-December were at between -8€ to September futures and between -5€ to December futures, depending on the delivery period.

- The processors have stepped up the purchase of sunflower to meet the needs for the coming months. Prices in the domestic market with delivery to the plants have strengthened to $ 10 per ton. The VO sunflower award remains at 20$ per ton.

- Prices for soybeans remain at the same level as last week. New soybean crop without GMO with delivery in October-December was traded at 420-430€ towards Italy and Germany, depending on the mode of transport.


Mar 08 - Argentina grain exchange says 80% of soy fields growing well
Eight in 10 hectares (19.8 to 24.71 acres) of Argentine soybean fields are in "normal to excellent" condition, the Buenos Aires grains exchange said on Thursday, thanks to recent rainfall over northern parts of the South American country. Argentina is one of the world's two main exporters of soybean oil and soybean meal, along with Brazil, and the exchange believes this season's crop will hit 52.5 million metric tons - the highest figure in five years.

Mar 08 - Brazil mills boost sugar capacity, 'leave' ethanol to corn processors
Brazil cane mills will boost their sugar production capacity as much as 10% in the new season from April to take advantage of relatively high sugar prices and as increasing supplies of corn make the grain a cheap feedstock for ethanol output. Brazil is the world's largest sugar producer. It accounted for nearly 50% of global sugar trade last year as unfavorable weather due to the El Nino climate pattern reduced output and exports from competitors India and Thailand.


Mar 07 - Egypt's GASC cancels May wheat tender as Russian prices stay high (AgriCensus)

- Egypt’s state grain importer has canceled a wheat buy tender issued for May 1-10 shipment, where the lowest offer made was for Bulgarian-origin wheat, without giving any reason, trade sources have told Agricensus Thursday.

- The General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) made no purchase in its tender held on Thursday, despite offers of Bulgarian origin wheat being shown at $225.70/mt and $233.77/mt FOB Varna on 180 and 270-days payment terms respectively, and the lowest freight idea at $16.50/mt.That made it $242.20/mt and $250.27/mt CFR respectively, the cheapest offer on the day.

- Apart from Bulgarian origin, Romanian and French were the next most competitive options among the 27 offers placed, while Russian offers were well out of competition with all the selling ideas shown at the unofficial “floor” price of $235/mt FOB for 180-days term and $260/mt for 270-days term. That is $10/mt lower compared to the previous tender level for a 180-day term and $5/mt down for 270-day term, but was still way above the offers that are seen in the broader market now – with levels at around $200-205/mt FOB NTTK. Trade sources said that the discrepancy in prices could be the main reason for the cancelation, as with the recent, significant drop in the physical market price, GASC officials were expecting to see lower levels, especially from Russia.

The country is the cheapest world origin right now, but was listed at the highest price among other competitors in the tender. At its previous tender, which closed on February 16, GASC booked 180,000 mt of Ukrainian and Romanian-origin wheat paying $255/mt CFR for the April 10-25 shipment.


Mar 07 - China Jan-Feb soybean imports fall to 5-year low
Soybean imports for top oilseed buyer China fell to a five-year low for the first two months of the year, weighed down by poor crushing margins and fewer ship arrivals during the Lunar New Year holidays. Imports for January and February combined were at 13.04 million metric tons, down 8.8% from the same period a year ago, according to the General Administration of Customs.

Mar 07 - World wheat outlook not as heavy as Chicago price plunge suggests - Braun
Exactly two years ago, Chicago wheat futures stamped all-time highs after top exporter Russia invaded fellow supplier Ukraine, immediately throwing almost 30% of global wheat exports into question. But on Wednesday, CBOT wheat slipped to its lowest level since August 2020, joining the ranks with corn and soybeans, which last week also notched their lowest prices since late 2020.


Mar 06 - Argentina farmlands to see drier autumn as El Nino fades, says grains exchange
Rainfall in Argentina is set to become less frequent as the El Nino weather phenomenon subsides, giving way to a drier autumn and the possibility of a La Nina climate pattern, the Buenos Aires Grains Exchange said on Tuesday. Argentina is a key global food exporter, and output in the current 2023/24 season has benefited from higher-than-usual rainfall drive by El Nino.

Mar 06 - Mielke sees Malaysian palm oil price at 3,800-4,300 ringgit in next 3 mths
Malaysian palm oil price is seen trading in the range of 3,800 to 4,300 ringgit in the next three months as supplies tighten, leading industry analyst Thomas Mielke said on Wednesday. Malaysia's palm oil benchmark contract was trading at 4,042 ringgit at 0409 GMT, up 1.4% from a day earlier.


Mar 05 - Australia lifts crop production estimates after summer rains
The Australian agriculture ministry raised its estimate for the country's 2023/24 winter wheat harvest by about 500,000 metric tons to 26 million tons, while also lifting its assessments for canola, sorghum and cotton production. The size of Australia's harvests is important for global markets because the country is one of the world's biggest agricultural exporters and will ship most of its crops overseas.

Mar 05 - India's wheat, rapeseed ravaged by rain just before harvesting
Untimely rainfall and hailstorms have battered winter-sown crops, including wheat, rapeseed, and chickpeas in India's main producing areas, delaying harvesting, industry and government officials told Reuters. Adverse weather could limit growth in wheat production and complicate the government's efforts to build stocks.

Mar 04 - Brazil soy crop view revised twice in a day showing opposing trends, consultancies say
An agribusiness consultancy on Friday raised the forecast for Brazil's 2023/2024 soybean crop while another cut its projection, indicating how different methodologies and unpredictable weather events have made it difficult to estimate the country's output this season. StoneX raised its soy forecast to 151.5 million metric tons, citing improved climate conditions in a season marked by excessive heat and dryness in top producer Mato Grosso state when the season kicked off.

Mar 04 - Oversized US corn crop responsible for swell in global supplies - Braun
Global corn stockpiles are set to reach five-year highs later in 2024, undergoing their largest annual expansion in seven years. But the United States’ contribution to that growth is much larger than normal after a record harvest last summer. That would usually spur a bit more U.S. demand than is currently projected for 2023-24, though ample supplies in rival exporters have cut into U.S. market dominance, suggesting last year’s huge U.S. corn acreage was excessive.


Mar 01 - Euronext wheat futures plunge to lowest since August 2020 (AgriCensus)

- Euronext milling wheat futures plunged to new lows during intra-day trading on Friday, as traders and investors raised bearish bets on the outlook for wheat near the contract’s expiry.

March Euronext futures were trading as low as €184.50/mt, down €6.25/mt from the open, putting the price of wheat futures at their lowest point since August 2020.
Wheat prices are more than 50% below the over-€400/mt prices seen after Russia's invasion of Ukraine had created uncertainty over global wheat supplies.
Before August 2020, wheat futures had failed to maintain a price level above €200/mt and generally tended to trade between €150/mt and €190/mt.
Traders said the continued pressure from rising Russian exports and increasingly aggressive Russian prices are driving down global wheat prices.

- Russian offers for 11.5% and 12.5% protein wheat cargoes were assessed at $201/mt and $206/mt respectively, on an FOB basis from Russian Black Sea ports.
Surplus stocks elsewhere have also weighed on wheat prices, with millions of tonnes of wheat still yet to be sold in northern Europe and the Black Sea.
A Romanian trader said stocks of old crop milling and feed wheat in Romania and Bulgaria were just below 4 million mt, with traders already making trades on the new crop due in July.

- In Poland, one trader sees around 2.5-2.8 million mt of wheat available, from forecasts of 5.5 million mt of wheat exports for the 2023-2024 marketing year.

- Even as supplies rise, demand remains virtually nonexistent at the European Black Sea ports for new sales of milling wheat, with a similar trading environment for sellers in northern Europe.
- Lower prices have frustrated farmers, who are reluctant to sell in some cases below their production costs as prices plunge, leading to originators being unable to secure wheat supplies one trader said.


Mar 01 - Ukraine Agri SPIKE_MARKET weekly report

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb-birch @146$→144$→142$
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @142$→140$
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @6'100 UAH with VAT
· wheat 11.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @158$
· feed wheat DAP Danube, Ukraine, Feb-birch @157$
· barley DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @151$

- Ukraine
:
· 2 million tons of corn remain unharvested, which is 8% of the total sowing area. Corn remained in the fields of the mainly eastern regions - Dnipropetrovsk, Kharkiv, Sumy, Kherson and Chernihiv regions.
· Low prices and uncertainty about the frontline boundaries are likely to affect the decline in crops, including corn, in areas that are closer to the front.
· The market expects a decrease in corn sowing in 2024 by 10-15% to 3.5-3.7 million hectares.
· The pace of exports of agricultural products across borders with Poland continues to decline, mainly due to the fall in the pace of road transport.
· The cost of rail freight from Chop to Northern Italy was traded at 40€ per ton for the April-May period, compared to the rate of 55€ per ton last year for the same period.

- In February, corn prices reached the lowest level in the last three years due to increased production forecasts in South America, aggressive offers from Ukraine and reduced customer activity, including China, before the Chinese New Year celebration. The market has squeezed prices "to a minimum". The low cost of logistics in Ukraine, combined with low prices, has led to a critical decline in prices for farmers. Sustainable demand for grain in seaports and sellers' resistance create a liquidity vacuum in the market for the coming period. Corn was traded in the range of 135-142$ DAP in the direction of seaports and 135-140€ FCA loaded into Eurocars on the Western market. The market of Western Ukraine and seaports is in price parity (at the level) on corn since October last year.

- Significant volumes of wheat supplies from the Black Sea and the drop in export prices from Russia have influenced market sentiment, pulling global prices and Euronext wheat futures to perennial lows. The price of feed wheat in Ukraine is aligned with the price of corn. The price pressure continues.

- Prices for sunflower have stabilized. The international oil market found a temporary balance at 810-820$ delivered to Bulgaria and 850-870$ CIF Turkey. Sunflower with delivery to factories in Ukraine was traded within 300-330$ without VAT. On the Bulgarian market prices decreased by 15-20$ to 400-410$ delivered to processing.

- Soybeans prices last week keep levels. No special changes in sales directions.


Mar 01 - WTO issues new draft trade deals after all-night talks, some issues unresolved
World Trade Organization negotiators released new draft deals on Friday after all-night talks in Abu Dhabi, showing that several key issues remained unresolved hours away from their deadline, which has already been extended twice. The biennial conference is seeking to revise global commerce rules on a range of topics including curbing fishing subsidies and extending a moratorium on digital trade tariffs - a move that has overwhelming government and business support but that India and South Africa oppose.

 

Mar 01 - India's basmati rice exports to fall as Pakistan's surge
India's basmati rice exports are likely to fall in 2024 after nearing a record high last year, as rival Pakistan is offering the grain at competitive prices amid a rebound in production, industry officials said. India and Pakistan are the leading exporters of the premium long-grain variety of rice, famous for its aroma, to countries such as Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and the United States.

 

Feb 29 - EU sunoil prices fall to 3 year low, biodiesel demand supports rapeoil (AgriCensus)

Ample supplies of sunoil in the European market have caused prices at European ports to fall to their lowest level in three and a half years and, despite this, have left demand at a minimum, while rapeseed oil prices have risen above sunoil for the first time since February 2022 due to continued demand for biofuels, according to Agricensus data. At the same time, soybean oil has lost its premium over other oils as soybean processing in the region has increased.

The underperformance of Black Sea ports due to Russia's war in Ukraine, the situation in the Red Sea, and difficulties in operating alternative routes, have meant large volumes of sunflower oil are flowing to Europe at lower prices, putting pressure on the market. However, the availability of cheaper offers has not triggered an increase in demand, market sources said, as the European market is flooded with sunflower oil.
“Conceptually it should be the opposite - lower price better demand - but there is no demand because the EU has flooded with sunflower oil due to the Red Sea situation and most players are well covered,” a European trader told Agricensus.

Sunoil
- One of the results of the increase in Ukrainian supplies of sunflower oil at lower prices is a decrease in imported soybean and palm oils. According to data from the European Commission, imports of sunflower oil by EU countries have increased by almost 30% to 1.6 million mt since July 2023, compared to the same period a year earlier. The share of supplies of Ukrainian sunflower oil in these imports increased from 89.7% in 2023 to 92.6% in 2024. According to Agrcensus monitoring, prices for sunflower oil at six European ports for delivery in the second quarter of 2024 fell to $915/mt (€845/mt) FOB against $900/mt  (€831/mt) FOB, which is the lowest level since September 2020, when the average price was $855/mt /mt FOB.
“Sunflower oil in Europe lost a lot of demand to other oils when Ukraine and Russia started offering more active,” a European crusher told Agricensus.

- At the same time, the cost of sunflower seeds in EU countries remains quite high, despite the high influx of sunflower oil from Ukraine. According to industry association FEDIOL, the sunflower crush by EU countries in the first five months of the 2023/24 season increased by 9% to 2.4 million mt compared to the previous season, with the January crush amounting to 571,000 mt, which is the highest level since October 2021. According to US Department of Agriculture data, in the current season, imports of sunflower oil by countries of the economic bloc will reach the highest level over the past ten years at 2.35 million mt.

Rapeoil
- Even though the supply of sunflower oil has increased and prices have fallen, rapeseed oil prices remain high. Stable demand from biodiesel production and a reduction in rapeseed crushing in favor of soybeans by large crushers is supporting prices.
“Biodiesel is still having healthy margins and rapeseed oil is the major product for them,” a trader based in the EU said.

- At the same time, FEDIOL data shows that during November, December 2023, and January 2024, rapeseed crushed by European processors reached levels of 1.73-1.79 million mt per month, some of the highest seen. According to Agricensus data, rapeseed oil for delivery in March is offered at €890/mt FOB Rotterdam, against the buyer’s idea of €855/mt, and in April €875/mt FOB Rotterdam against €850/mt. In addition, low sales of rapeseed by farmers have kept the rapeseed oil market in good shape.
“Due to depressed seed prices and farmers not willing to sell the seeds, the overall rapeseeds oil structure elevated,” the trader said.

Soyoil
- Soybean oil has meanwhile lost its premium to other vegoils in Europe as some of the major crushers have turned to soybean processing due to demand for soybean oil-based biodiesel in the US. Soybean crushing by European crushers in December and January increased to an average of 1.17 million mt, the highest level in the past five months. At the same time, prices for soybean oil have fallen by more than 25% since October 2023 to €850/mt FCA Hamburg.


Feb 29 - Brazil's Abiove cuts 2024 soybean output estimate for second time this month
Abiove has cut its estimate for Brazil's 2024 soybean output for the second time this month, the association representing global grain traders and crushers operating in Brazil said on Wednesday. Abiove now expects local farmers to produce 153.8 million metric tons of soybeans, down from the 156.1 million it forecast in February and the 159 million tons produced in 2023.

Feb 29 - Argentina rains to bring more relief to soy and corn crops
Copious rains in the coming days will continue to provide moisture to most of Argentina's agricultural regions, favoring soybean and corn crops planted in the 2023/24 cycle, the Buenos Aires grain exchange (BdeC) said on Wednesday. Argentina is one of the world's largest exporters of soy meal and the world's third largest supplier of corn.


Feb 28 - Indonesia 2024 palm oil output seen rising by 5% year-on-year - GAPKI
Indonesia's palm oil output this year is expected to rise by 5% year-on-year to 57.6 million metric tons as more newly matured crops come into fruition, the Indonesia Palm Oil Association (GAPKI) said on Tuesday. In 2023, palm oil output grew by 7% from the previous year to 54.84 million tons including 50.07 million tons crude palm oil (CPO), despite the moderate dry weather El Nino pattern that hit the country.

Feb 28 - Ivorian cocoa output could fall by up to 25%, farm minister says
Adverse weather in Ivory Coast, the world's largest cocoa producer, could hit output by as much as 25% this season, Agriculture Minister Kobenan Kouassi Adjoumani said on Tuesday. "We are waiting for the intermediary (mid-crop) campaign for final estimates. For the moment we are at 20% (drop) but forecasts say that, if it (adverse weather) continues, it will fall 25% maximum,” Adjoumani told reporters on the margins of the Paris farm show.


Feb 27 - AgRural again lowers forecast for Brazil's 2023/24 soybean crop
Brazil's 2023/24 soybean crop is expected to reach 147.7 million metric tons, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, lowering a January forecast of 150.1 million tons after yield losses in key producing areas due to adverse weather. Farmers in the world's largest soybean producer and exporter have been grappling with dry and hot weather this season, which has led government agencies and private consultancies to trim their output forecasts.

Feb 27 - Persistent dry, hot weather worries Ivory Coast cocoa farmers
Dry weather and high temperatures continued last week in most of Ivory Coast's cocoa-growing regions, raising concerns for the size and quality of the April-to-September mid-crop, farmers said on Monday. Ivory Coast, the world's top cocoa producer, is in its dry season which runs from mid-November to March, when rain is usually scarce.

Feb 26 - Funds post all-time CBOT corn short and extend record soy selling streak -Braun
U.S. grain and oilseed markets have posted historic declines so far this year with the recovery of global supplies, and prices continued to fall last week even after speculators established their most bearish ever bets in Chicago corn. In the week ended Feb. 20, money managers increased their net short position in CBOT corn futures and options to a record 340,732 contracts from 314,341 a week earlier. That surpassed the prior all-time net short of 322,215 contracts set in April 2019.

Feb 26 - Argentina's hoped-for record corn harvest threatened by sliding prices -exchange
A highly anticipated record corn harvest in Argentina could see its benefits curbed by a global decline in prices, the country's Rosario grains exchange said on Friday, in a possible blow to a new government battling the economy's worst crisis in decades. Corn exports from Argentina, the world's third biggest supplier, are expected to rise 53% compared to last season thanks to ample rainfall favoring the harvest estimated at a record 57 million metric tons.


Feb 23 - Ukrainian sunflower crush margins fall on low sunoil, sunmeal prices (AgriCensus)

- Sunflower oil and meal producers are under pressure across the Black Sea region, after prices for processed products have tumbled over the past month, cutting margins for producers to the bare minimum in some regions, trade sources have told Agricensus Friday. Prices for sunflower oil have fallen 7% over the period, while meal prices have plunged 24% under pressure from prevailing and relatively light demand from the main destinations, leaving processing margins in some regions squeezed as sunflower prices remain at high levels. That could tee up a reduction in output, and has left traders expecting February to see a reduction in expected production levels, particularly in Ukraine as Russia targets excess flows into the Turkish market.

Prices

- Sunflower oil prices from sellers have decreased by an average of $60-70/mt - or 7% - over the past month depending on the country of origin and were heard at $835-840/mt CIF Mersin for spot delivery, against buyers' ideas at $825-830/mt CIF Mersin. Trade sources have told Agricensus that they believe that the market has almost reached its minimum, but would not rule out further adjustments in the short term and believe that March will be a key month. Prices for sunflower meal fell by 24% in Ukrainian ports to $155-165/mt CPT port and were down by 17.5-18% to $225-235/mt CIF Marmara, according to buying levels for March delivery.

Destinations

- This comes as demand from major demand destinations such as India, China, and EU countries remains sluggish and product supply in the Black Sea region is more than sufficient, given the presence of two major sunflower oil exporters in the region. In addition, India, which has significantly reduced purchases of Ukrainian sunflower oil due to the risks associated with the war, and has turned instead to sunflower oil of Russian and Argentine origin, is now inclined to prioritise purchases of Argentine sunflower oil. That comes amid increased risks and additional costs associated with transiting volumes through the Red Sea.

- Russian sellers of sunflower oil are trying to expand their presence in the Turkish market and have been reducing prices sharply to now reach levels that are on average $5/mt lower than Ukrainian volumes. Traders had expressed hope that the return of Chinese buyers, after the Lunar New Year break, would fire some buying interest, but so far the trade seems to be testing the market and have not begun actively buying. Sources spoken to by Agricensus have said they see relatively low prices for sunflower oil of Black Sea origin - at $840/mt CIF China, for delivery in March-April, while for sunflower meal prices were heard at $280-295/mt CIF China on average, depending on quality.

Margin

- Against the background of falling prices for finished products and restrained sales of farmers at high prices, the crush margins of some Ukrainian crushers have reached minimum levels. Trade sources at crushers in the central and western parts of Ukraine talk about a decrease in margins to a minimum level with purchase prices for sunflower at the level of UAH14,000/mt ($363/mt) CPT crush plant, but in some cases margins drop to zero, once increased costs for logistics are factored in. Crushers do not rule out a reduction in crush or its suspension if current trends continue.

However, some crushers in the southern regions report sufficient processing margins of about $50/mt at current price levels for both raw materials and processed products, which is likely due to minimal logistics costs due to the territorial proximity to ports.

Nonetheless, given the decline in prices and sluggish demand in February for sunflower oil and sunflower meal, market participants expect a possible decrease in sunflower crush in February by 7-13% from the 1.5 million mt predicted at the beginning of the month to 1.3-1.4 million mt.


Feb 23 - US farmers face harsh economics with record corn supplies in silos
Illinois farmer Dan Henebry regrets not selling more of his corn crop last summer, when the Midwest needed rain and prices were high. He is not alone. Farmers across the United States are kicking themselves for putting off corn sales after fields dried up in May and June, fueling expectations for higher prices and smaller harvests. Instead, prices tanked as rains saved the crop.

Feb 23 - Ukrainian Agri SPIKE_MARKET Weekly Report

- Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb-birch @144.5$→144$→142$
· wheat 11.5pro DAP Danube, Ukraine, Feb-birch @7'300 UAH with VAT
· wheat 10.5pro DAP Danube, Ukraine, Feb-birch @6'500 UAH with VAT
· wheat 10.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb-berez @152$
· wheat furs. DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @152$→150$→148$
· barley DAP Odessa, Ukraine, birch @152.5$
· sunflower (oil 44%) DAP Sh. Bulgaria, birch-Apr @420$

- Ukraine:
· The correction of the railway logistics chain value from Ukraine’s borders to the markets of Southern and Central Europe opens up good arbitration opportunities for Ukrainian exporters between seaports and the Western border.

- World:
· The Rosario Grain Exchange in Argentina lowered the forecast for soybean harvest from 49.5 to 52 million tons.
· Soybean harvesting forecasts in Brazil are reduced and fall within expectations from 145 to 156 million tons.

- Buyers in the corn market have divided into two camps. Traders who need to close the nearest positions with delivery to the port for up to 15 days bought corn within 140-145$. In turn, more distant supply positions for March-April were traded within 135-140$ delivered to the port. Lower prices at seaports and lower freight costs across Europe returned parity between western border prices and port prices. Buyers on the western border bought corn at 120€ or 130$ before being transported to European trains. The decline in world corn prices is accompanied by a rapid pace of corn sowing and favorable weather forecasts in Brazil.

- The approach of a new wheat crop causes the world market to adjust the price differences between food and feed wheat. The premium for food wheat is gradually declining, and the price of feed wheat is losing its pricality relative to the price of corn. The new 11% Italian food wheat crop is traded at 200-205€ to northern Italy or 10-15€/ton above the corn price.

- Prices for sunflower could not keep in the domestic market of Ukraine and decreased last week by 10-20$ per ton. Sales of sunflower in the direction of the Bulgarian market is gaining activity, where prices have not changed relative to last week, and in some areas even increased. There is a low level of coverage of processing capacities with raw materials in the Bulgarian market.

- Soybean prices remained unchanged in relation to last week in all directions. It feels that the market is drifting on a "price day".


Feb 22 - Argentina corn and soy outlooks take hit after heat wave
Argentina's Rosario grains exchange cut its estimates for the country's 2023/24 soybean and corn harvests on Wednesday to 49.5 million and 57 million metric tons, respectively, due to a heat wave in late January and early this month. The exchange has previously calculated the soybean harvest at 52 million tons and the corn harvest at 59 million tons.

Feb 22 - Ukraine corn area to lose to soy, but cash shortage limits switch
Ukrainian farmers are reviewing their planting plans for 2024 after low corn prices led to steep losses last year but their ability to switch to more profitable soybeans is limited by scarce funding, producers said. Farmers in the southern regions in the war-stricken country have started spring sowing with barley but still have time to decide whether to sow corn, which have been generating losses of more than $50 per ton for producers.


Feb 21 - Japan's MAFF tenders for 116k mt US, Canadian and Australian wheat ( AgriCensus )

- Japan's agriculture ministry has issued an international tender to buy 115,921 mt of US, Canadian, and Australian wheat for loading in March-May, an official note published by the ministry showed Tuesday. The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) is tendering for 30,435 mt of US hard red winter wheat. MAFF was also seeking two cargoes of Canadian western red spring wheat with 13.5% protein in the volume of 51,586 mt.
The wheat is for shipment from US and Canadian ports between March 21 and April 20.

- In addition to the US and Canadian cargoes, Japan's MAFF is inviting offers for 33,900 mt of Australian standard white wheat to be loaded between May 1 and May 31.

- The tender is set to take place Thursday, February 22, between 1345 and 1430 local time.
In its previous tender, which closed on February 15, Japan's agriculture ministry booked 115,035 mt of US, Canadian, and Australian wheat for loading in March-April.


Feb 21 - Brazil soybean production view cut as crop tour progresses - Agroconsult
Brazil's 2023/2024 soybean crop estimate has been reduced to 152.2 million metric tons from the previous estimate of 153.8 million tons, agribusiness consultancy Agroconsult said, on Tuesday, citing adverse crop weather in key producing states. Agroconsult, which began a tour of Brazil's main soy producing regions 33 days ago, said the expedition has so far covered almost 30,000 kilometers, representing 60% of the areas it intends to survey.

Feb 21 - US exporters losing battle for domestic soybeans to expanding crush - Braun
Over the last decade or so, annual U.S. soybean use was often split somewhat evenly between exports and domestic processing, though the split is unusually unbalanced this year as exports slip and crush increases. Early government estimates show a potential record 2024 U.S. soybean crop allowing for bigger exports in the 2024-25 marketing year starting Sept. 1, but the total use allocations of exports and crush are expected to be very similar to 2023-24, despite heavier supplies.


Feb 20 - Brazil's soybean harvest hits 32%, says AgRural
Brazil's 2023/24 soybean harvest had reached 32% of the planted area as of last Thursday, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, up 9 percentage points from the previous week and above the 25% seen at the same time a year earlier. AgRural said in a statement that work in the fields last week was driven by Mato Grosso and Parana, two major grain-producing states where harvesting is already nearing its end in some areas.

Feb 20 - Funds' bearish CBOT corn, soy views flirting with all-time highs: Braun
Speculators have been net sellers across U.S. grain and oilseed futures for nine consecutive weeks, coinciding with a heavy easing in prices, and fresh lows came in the following days amid bearish government supply outlooks through 2025. In the week ended Feb. 13, money managers’ combined net short position in Chicago corn and soybeans rose by nearly 21,000 contracts to 448,841 futures and options contracts. The record is 455,225 set in April 2019.


Feb 19 - Speculators continue to accumulate US corn, soybean shorts (CFTC-AgriCensus)

- Investors in the US corn and soybean markets continued to accumulate shorts in the week ending February 13, sending the net short in both contracts to new multi-year highs, a report from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) showed late Friday. Corn and soybean futures fell in the week covered by the CFTC report after the US Department of Agriculture's World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates report on February 8 showed small dips in the output forecast for both crops.

- Speculators increased shorts in two of the three US wheat markets while boosting longs in all the wheat contracts. Managed money investors in the corn market boosted shorts by 22,618 lots during the week covered by the report, bringing the total to 489,187, a 250-week high. Long positions increased by 6,021 lots to 174,846. The boost in shorts, coupled with the smaller rise in longs bolstered the net short by 16,597 lots to 314,341, a 251-week high.

 

- Open interest in the corn market jumped by 42,855 contracts to stand at 2,038,849, an 86-week high.
The same dynamic was at work in the soybean market where investors increased short positions by 8,880 lots, bringing the total to 183,548, a 246-week high.

- Soybean long positions held by managed money investors rose by 4,680 lots to 49,048. The advance in shorts together small gain in longs, led to a 4,200-lot increase in the net short to 134,500, the highest in 247 weeks.
- Open interest in soybeans rose by 13,790 contracts to 1,005,227, a 17-week high.

- The soybean oil market net short dropped by 8,785 lots to 35,440, while the soybean meal net short surged by 13,002 lots to 27,592, a 121-week high.

- Speculators in the Chicago wheat market, the most active US wheat contract, reduced short positions by 6,851 lots to 135,003. Long positions jumped by 4,215 lots, bringing the total to 79,331 contracts, a 10-week high. The decline in shorts and the increase in longs trimmed the net short by 11,066 lots to 55,672, a 27-week low. Investors in the Kansas wheat contract increased short positions by 4,701 lots, bringing the total to 81,825, an 11-week high. Speculators boosted the number of longs they held by 1,690 lots, which sent the total to 45,417. The gain in shorts coupled with the smaller rise in longs boosted the net short by 3,011 lots to 36,408.

- The Minneapolis wheat contract posted a 96-lot gain in shorts, bringing the total to 31,525. The number of longs climbed by 1,170 lots to 6,693, the highest level in 27 weeks.
The rise in shorts and the bigger advance in longs led to a 1,074-lot decrease in the net short, leaving it at 24,832, an 18-week low.


Feb 19 - Brazil's biggest farm coop grapples with surging grain inventories
Brazil's largest farm cooperative entered 2024 with grain stocks over 50% higher than in 2023 driven by a bumper crop last season and sluggish farmer selling, Coamo's President Airton Galinari said late on Thursday. The situation reinforces that supply pressure could continue to weigh on grain prices and dampen farmer sentiment in Brazil, the world's biggest soybean exporter and producer and a major corn exporter.

Feb 19 - Weather damages only 1-2% of Ukraine 2024 winter wheat crop, ministry says
Only 1-2% of the Ukrainian winter wheat crop will not survive the current winter, the agriculture ministry said on Sunday, citing data from scientists. Winter wheat accounts for more than 95% of Ukraine's overall wheat output. During winter, up to 7% of the winter sowing area usually dies, mainly due to heavy frosts and ice crust on fields, but the winter has been milder this year.


Feb 16 - Ukraine Weekly SPIKE_MARKET report

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb @144$
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb-birch @142$
· DAP corn Mon. Italy, feb-apr @203€->202€
· wheat furs. DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb-berez @151$
· sunflower (oil 47%) DAP Sh. Bulgaria, Feb-berez @445$->435$

- Ukraine:
· A significant reduction in the cost of railway logistics in Europe in February by 30% relative to the rates in December opens up additional opportunities for the export of Ukrainian agricultural products by rail through the western borders of Ukraine and Europe.
· Low cultivation efficiency and complex conditions of the world corn market make agricultural producers reduce corn sowing. One of the largest agricultural holdings in Ukraine, Epicenter Agro, refused to sow corn in the 2024/25 season in favor of oilseeds - soybeans and sunflower.
- World:
· The U.S. hosted the Agricultural Forum, which added an additional impetus to lower world prices for grain and oilseeds due to the optimistic forecast for crops of corn, wheat and soybeans in the U.S. for the 2024 harvest.
· The Agricultural Forum predicts an increase in residues in the US in the 2024/25 season compared to the 2023/24 season: corn +16%; soybean +38%; wheat +16%.

- Corn trading is gradually slowing down against the backdrop of a significant price decline. Lower corn prices at seaports increased the competitiveness of its sales across Ukraine's western borders with Europe. Buyers at seaports were looking for deals below $140 with delivery in March. You could sell corn on the western border at a price of 120€ to 125€ with DAP delivery to the border.

- Wheat prices move confidently towards below $150. The premium for feed wheat with a protein of at least 10.5% is 3-4$. Food wheat premiums are lowered amid discussions about the prospects and expectations of a new crop.

- The Ministry of Economy has begun issuing the first licenses for sunflower export under the simplified system. In the direction of Bulgaria, sunflower could be sold at prices from 420$ to 425$ with a premium for oil content above 44% for raw materials. Export duty for sunflower in the direction of Europe was reduced to 1.8% of the export price. Domestic demand from factories in Ukraine has coverage for the next few months. It was possible to sell sunflower for domestic processing at a price from 320$ to 340$ without VAT.

- Soybean prices have decreased in all directions to 10$ per ton depending on the specific direction.


Feb 16 - Russia's wheat production in 2024/25 may exceed last year’s figures (AgriCensus)

Local analysts continue to raise 2024/25 Russia’s wheat crop forecast amid persisting favorable weather conditions for winter wheat development.

Wheat harvest estimates now exceed the current year's figure of 92.8 million mt rising to 93.6 million mt, which would be the second-largest harvest in history after 2022, when 105 million mt were harvested. The winter wheat harvest in 2024 is estimated at 67.7 million mt versus 63.8 million mt in 2023, while the spring wheat harvest is expected to be 25.9 million mt versus 28.9 million mt a year earlier.

Weather conditions for the new harvest have remained favorable over the past few months, resulting winter crop conditions that are above average for this period. Weather models are forecasting mild temperatures in most winter crop-growing regions over the coming weeks.

Thus, analysts believe that in the absence of sudden temperature rises and serious frosts, the prospects for a new grain harvest in Russia remain good.


Feb 16 - US farmers to plant less corn and more soy in 2024 as prices fall
U.S. farmers will plant less corn and more soybeans in 2024 than they did a year earlier with prices of both commodities hovering around three-year lows, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Thursday. As the world's supplies of corn and soy increase after years of tightness during the COVID-19 pandemic and start of the Ukraine war, farmers have few good options to turn a profit in 2024 and farm incomes are forecast to fall sharply for a second consecutive year.

Feb 16 - Ukraine 2024 grain, oilseed crop may fall 15-20%, says UCAB business association
The combined Ukrainian grain and oilseed harvest may fall 15% to 20% in 2024 because of A smaller sowing area, the Kyiv-based UCAB business association said on Thursday. Ukraine is a major global grain and oilseeds producer but its harvests have decreased since Russia invaded and occupied significant swathes of territory.

Feb 15 - UK and Japan slip into recession (Reuters)

- Britain's economy fell into a recession in the second half of 2023, a tough backdrop for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak who has promised to boost growth ahead of an election expected later this year. The GDP contracted by a worse-than-expected 0.3% in the three months to December, official data showed.

- Britain is not alone. Japan also slipped into a recession at the end of last year, losing its title as the world's third-biggest economy to Germany and raising doubts about when the central bank would begin to exit its ultra-loose monetary policy. The GDP fell an annualized 0.4% in the October-December period.

 

 

Feb 15 - FranceAgriMer raises 2023/24 soft wheat export forecast outside EU to 10.25m mt (AgriCensus)

- France's state-backed farm agency FranceAgriMer has increased its forecast for 2023/24 soft wheat exports outside the European Union (EU) in its monthly outlook published on February 14. According to the monthly report, FranceAgriMer raised the forecast for commercial exports to countries outside the EU by 150,000 mt to 10.25 million mt, a volume some 100,000 mt above the 10.15 million mt exported in 2022/23.

- FranceAgriMer also lowered its forecast for exports to EU member states in 2023/24 to 6.32 million mt from the previous estimate of 6.55 million mt, representing a 1.2% decrease in year-on-year exports to EU member states. The farm agency said its estimates for wheat exports outside of the EU were raised on higher expectations for Morocco and China. At the same time, estimates for exports within the EU were lowered due to greater competition from the Black Sea into Southern Europe. The total volume of exports was also lowered to 16.67 million mt from 16.76 million mt a month ago.

The figure is just 0.1% above exports in the 2022/23 marketing year.

- According to data from the European Commission, France exported 4.61 million mt of wheat between July 1, 2023, and February 2, 2024, with total wheat exports expected at 16.98 million mt, up 0.1% from 2022/23. Estimates for French soft wheat ending stocks in 2023/24 were marginally higher at 3.49 million mt, but still represented a 37.1% increase in stocks from the 2.55 million mt held in the 2022/23 season.
- French durum export estimates within the EU were lowered slightly to 730,000 mt, 10,000 mt lower than the previous estimate, while estimates for exports outside of the EU were unchanged at 130,000 mt. The latest estimates reflect a year-on-year decline of 8.6% from the 798,000 mt of French durum exports within the bloc for 2022/23, but a year-on-year increase in exports outside the EU of 7.4% from 121,000 mt in 2022/23. Expectations for ending stocks of durum wheat were reduced from the previous estimate to 118,000 mt, 27.4% below the 162,000 mt held in the 2022/23 season.

- The agency slightly lowered its forecast for barley exports outside the EU at 3.13 million mt, or 1.4% below last year. The intra-EU barley export forecast was unchanged at 2.9 million mt, a 6.8% year-on-year decrease compared with the 2022/23 season. While the agency expected exports from France to Spain and Portugal to decrease, it anticipated increased exports to Germany.

- FranceAgriMer decreased its forecast for French corn exports in 2023/24 to countries outside the EU by 20,000 mt on the month to 350,000 mt. Additionally, exports to the EU were slightly decreased to 3.51 million mt, from previous estimates of 3.52 million mt, a 5.8% increase in volumes exported to the EU in 2022/23. Corn ending stocks were also raised on month and are expected at 2.37 million mt, up 43% from the 1.65 million mt held in the 2022/23 marketing year.


Feb 15 - Abundant rains lift Argentina soy, corn crops
Plentiful rains in recent days across Argentina's main growing regions have provided much-needed relief to the country's soy and corn crops, which had been punished by a heat wave and dry weather in the weeks before, the Rosario grains exchange said on Wednesday. The South American nation, a top exporter of both crops, is expected to bring in 52 million metric tons of soy and a record 59 million tons of corn in the season, the exchange estimates.

Feb 14 - Ukraine Corn area to drop further in Ukraine for 2024, soybeans rise: ministry

- Ukrainian producers are expected to cut further the area planted with corn but continue to increase those with oilseeds, especially soybeans and barley, a Ukrainian agriculture ministry survey showed Tuesday. According to the survey, up to 70% of farmers interviewed plan to increase the areas planted with soybeans, which is equivalent to around a 21% increase compared with the 2023 year spring campaign.

In 2023, the industry was also estimating an increase in soybeans, however, according to official agriculture ministry data, the planting was done on 97% of the planned areas with almost 1.8 million ha given to soybeans.

That was still almost a 19% increase compared with the soybean planted area seen in 2022.

- In addition to soybeans, farmers continue to prioritize the whole oilseeds sector, with the expectation that the fields planted with oilseeds will increase by 11% year on year. Farmers said they also are considering increasing the areas planted with spring rapeseeds by 24%, spring barley by up to 7%, and spring wheat by 2%. In 2023, farmers planted 822,000 ha with spring barley – 79% of the planned areas and almost a 21% drop compared to areas completed in 2022.

- The area planted with spring wheat in 2023 was seen at 280,000 ha, almost in line with the result seen in 2022.

- No information about the areas planted with spring rapeseed in 2023 was available, thus Agricensus understands it was too small to report, as most of the rapeseed production in Ukraine comes from winter plantings.

- Meanwhile, the areas planted with corn are projected to drop further by around 9% in 2024. The industry expects this, as the profitability of growing corn is dropping along with the prices for that commodity.
"Now corn cultivation is unprofitable, wheat is somewhere around zero and oil crops profit is at low levels,” a local analyst said. In 2023, the areas planted with corn were slightly above 4 million ha, which was 112% of the initial ministry plan but also almost a 7% drop compared with what was sown in 2022.

- In terms of sunflower seeds, the Ukrainian farmers have not yet decided if they will cut the area planted with this crop, but it cannot be excluded. In the spring campaign of 2023, farmers planted 5.3 million ha with sunflower seeds, which was 94% of the plan, but also only a 6% drop compared to 2022.

Ukraine is still unable to continue planting on up to 25% of its territories, as they are still under Russian occupation or are too close to the front lines.


Feb 14 - France cuts winter grain area estimates after rain-hit planting
France's farm ministry on Tuesday reduced its estimates of winter grain sowing, with the soft wheat area seen at its second lowest in 30 years, after heavy rain disrupted field work in the European Union's biggest crop producer. Difficult sowing conditions in France and other parts of western Europe have raised early doubts about this year's harvest, though large stocks in Europe and Russia have kept grain prices under pressure.

Feb 14 - Ukraine's 2024 corn area seen down 9% y/y – survey
Farmers in Ukraine, a major global corn grower and exporter, are expected to reduce the area sown with corn by 9% year-on-year in 2024, a survey compiled by the country's agriculture ministry showed on Tuesday. The survey, released to Reuters before its official publication by the ministry, said the overall spring sowing area could fall by about 500,000 hectares this year, or by 3.7%.


Feb 13 - Brazil second-corn output forecast raised as ideal sowing window widened, AgRural says
Brazil's 2023/24 second-corn production projection was raised by nearly 5 million metric tons to 91.2 million tons from 86.3 million tons, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, citing evidence of farmers planting an area larger than initially estimated. Brazil's second-corn is sowed after soybeans are harvested in the same fields, and an acceleration of the soy cycle changed the consultancy's expectations in relation to the second-corn crop, AgRural said.

Feb 13 - Farmers of southern Ukraine begin 2024 grain sowing
Farmers in southern Ukraine have started spring grain sowing, planting the first hectares of spring barley, producers said over the weekend. Farmers in the southern Odesa, Mykolaiv and Kherson regions traditionally start sowing in the second half of February if weather conditions are favourable.


Feb 13 - Egypt's GASC issues rare corn tender for March-April shipment (AgriCensus)

- Egypt’s state grain importer has announced a rare tender for optional origin yellow corn for March-April shipment, trade sources said over the weekend.
The General Authority Supply Commodities (GASC) is looking for at least 50,000 mt of yellow corn to be shipped within the March 15-25 shipment window and March 26- April 5 dates. GASC has asked for offers to be placed on an FOB basis, with payment within 180 days or 270 days of the letter of credit opening, at the buyer’s option.

The tender is set to close on February 13.

Egypt is among the world’s biggest corn importers, yet it rarely buys the grain via state tenders. Its last successful purchase was made a year ago on January 19, 2023, when it booked 50,000 mt of Romanian-origin feed corn from Ameropa at $339/mt CIF Egypt for February 10-25 shipment. Data from the Agricensus Export Dashboard shows that up to 39% of the country's corn imports in 2023 were sourced from Ukraine, closely followed by Brazil (28%) and Argentina (22%).


Feb 12  - Ukraine plans same 2024 sowing area as 2023, has concerns on wheat quality - minister
Ukraine expects its 2024 spring sowing area to be the same as last year, though it could see a slight decrease in the worst case scenario, Agriculture Minister Mykola Solsky told Reuters on Friday. Ukraine is a major global grain and oilseeds producer but its harvests have decreased since Russia invaded and occupied significant swathes of territory. The war, now in its 24th month and with no end in sight, has driven up global grain prices and disrupted supplies, especially to poorer countries.

Feb 12  - Shrinking Brazilian soy harvest balanced by creep-up of prior crop
Top exporter Brazil’s soybean harvest will be smaller than originally thought after excessive heat and dryness clipped yields in key growing areas, but much of the recent crop cuts has been offset by stealthy expansions in last year’s output. This trend with previous harvests has been ongoing for seven years, a span that contains both great and poor crops, and it likely reflects that demand, particularly exports, has been pushing maximum limits imposed by prior supply assumptions.


Feb 10 - Black Sea sunoil seeks alternative routes as Asian demand falters (AgriCensus)

- Black Sea sellers of sunoil are being forced to adjust their trade flows and look for new export markets, after demand from key Asia-based importing nations has dried up amid high stocks, national holidays and increased competition. One of the biggest importers, China, has reported high stocks of sunflower oil, putting pressure on demand during a national holiday period, while India has increased its purchases of sunflower oil from Argentina in a bid to minimize the supply disruption risks associated with the purchase of Black Sea sunflower oil. Exporters in both Russia and Ukraine, the two largest producers and exporters in the world, have been exposed to increased maritime risk in the Black Sea and now in the Red Sea as well.

- That has increased costs in the key transit route connecting them to the major destination markets, and made Black Sea sunflower oil uncompetitive on price and complicated logistics. According to the Indian solvents association, SEA, between November 1, 2023 and January 31, 2024, India bought 119,432 mt of Argentine sunflower oil, more than 70% higher than the same period of the previous year.

- Even though Argentinean oil is inferior in quality and quantity to Black Sea oil, Indian buyers at this stage have shown a preference for it, bolstered by worries over potential delays to logistics and increased costs.
“India is buying Argentine origin, but not more than Black Sea sunflower oil,” one trader based in India told Agricensus, with a second source saying it was a “good advantage for Argentina.”

This is due to the logistics component, the risks prevailing in the Black Sea region and the Red Sea, as well as the lower cost of the South American product.
The cost of freight from Argentina to India is on average 20% lower than freight from the Black Sea region and, according to estimates from various sources, is $83-90 CIF India. At the same time, the cost of freighting sunflower oil from the Black Sea region to India varies between $100-120 CIF India, according to various estimates from market sources. In addition, Argentine sunflower oil is on average $20/mt more expensive than Black Sea oil.

- This week, trades were heard for Argentine sunflower oil at $910/mt CIF India for delivery in February and $900/mt for delivery in March-April, while sunflower oil from the Black Sea region is offered at prices in the range of $920-940/mt CIF India, depending on the month supplies. And don't forget about soybean oil - which Indian importers will turn to as an alternative product when prices allow - given the narrowing spread between the two oils, it is becoming more attractive and may play into the dynamic.

- According to Agricensus monitoring data, soybean oil for delivery in April is offered at $920/mt CNF India, while sunflower oil for delivery in February-March is offered at $940/mt CIF India. Chinese buyers have not been active for more than a month, as sunflower oil stocks in the country - although declining week-on-week remain still high compared to the previous season and were estimated by Chinese sources at 340,000 mt at the end of January 2024.

Closer to home

- The decrease in sales of Black Sea sunflower oil to Asian countries has caused an increase in supplies of Ukrainian and Russian sunflower oil into local destination markets like Turkey for both origins, and into EU countries for Ukrainian supply. High offers from both countries are increasing competition for the Turkish market and putting even more pressure on prices in a race to the bottom that may keep buyers out as the anticipate further falls. Over the past month, prices for sunflower oil basis CIF Mersin have fallen by an average of $35-40/mt, or 4.5%.

- Offer levels are $860-865/mt CIF Mersin for delivery in March, while buyers have the opportunity to choose cheaper offers and have gradually reduced prices to $845-850/mt CIF Mersin, sharpening competition between the Black Sea rivals.
“We are seeing quite a lot of cheaper Russian offers for delivery in March, so Ukrainian sellers should think about offer prices,” said one Turkish broker. At the same time, Turkish demand is not able to absorb all the proposed volumes, given that February is almost completely covered, and March is more than half covered.

- European demand is also limited in anticipation of lower prices.
“Almost no one is buying. We mainly see sellers of sunflower oil, but a very limited number of buyers,” said the Bulgarian broker.


Feb 09 - Ukraine Agri SPIKE_MARKET weekly report

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb @149$->148$
· wheat furs. DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb @158$-157$
· rape NE-GMO ISCC DAP sh. Germany, Feb-Berez @407€

- Ukraine:
· As of 08.02, almost 320 thousand hectares of corn or almost 2 million tons of crop have not been harvested in the fields of Sumy, Chernihiv, Kharkiv and Dnipropetrovsk regions.
· USDA in February forecasts an increase in Ukrainian wheat exports in 2023/24 to 15 million tons against last assessment of 14 million tons.
· USDA in February forecast an increase in Ukrainian corn exports in 2023/24 to 23 million tons against a previous estimate of 21 million tons.
- World:
· USDA in February forecasts a decrease in world wheat residues by the end of 2023/24 to 259.44 million tons against a previous estimate of 260.48 million tons.
· USDA in February forecasts a reduction in global corn residues by the end of 2023/24 to 322.06 million tons against a previous estimate of 324.02 million tons.

- Corn prices continue to decline throughout the supply chain. Buyers are willing to consider offers at 202$ CIF for Italy and 203$ CIF for Spain. Most of them avoid offers in large volumes, including panamaxes (50-60 thousand tons), or ask for a discount for panamax up to $ 3 compared to prices when supplying ships with a class of hand (25-30 thousand tons).
Prices in the Ukrainian ports remain at 144-148$ for fast delivery within 1-2 weeks. Buyers' prices for the period March-April can be reduced to $ 135-140 due to the fall in global prices and a complex external situation, which is saturated with offers.
Ground transport corn is traded at 185-190€ with delivery to Italy in April-August.

- Wheat prices at ports decreased by 3-5$ per ton compared to last week. The limited demand of traders to cover the previous expensive sales and the uncertainty of further marketing in the foreign market at the "falling" market reduce the volume of wheat trade towards the ports. For food wheat in ports paid 173-175$ at delivery within 2 weeks. Prices of forage were traded at 20$ per ton below the price of food wheat.
Wheat of the new crop in the direction of Italy is traded at 205-210€ with delivery of cars/coaches to Northern Italy by protein content of 11% and delivery in August-September.

- Sunflower prices continue to be under pressure from the offer and decreased by 10-20$ per ton compared to last week's prices. The market expects simplification of procedures for obtaining export licenses in the direction of Bulgaria.

- Soybean buyers continue to reduce prices by $10 compared to last week. Consolidation in the foreign market before the New Year holidays in China and supply pressure lead to a decrease in world soybean prices.


Feb 09 - Brazil farmer bankruptcy filings worry global grain traders
Brazilian grain exporters lobby Anec on Thursday warned it was concerned about a rise in farmer bankruptcy filings in the country, adding a recent increase in cases potentially compromises the execution of grain contracts. The rise in farmer bankruptcy cases, which may affect delivery of committed grains throughout the season, may also hamper traders' ability to complete their export programs, Anec said.

Feb 09 - Palm oil buyers switch to cheaper rival oils, hampering price recovery
The rebound in palm oil prices is likely to be capped by abundant supplies of rival soyoil and sunflower oil, "soft" oils that are available at discounts to tropical palm oil for the first time in more than a year. Benchmark Malaysian palm oil futures have risen nearly 5% in 2024 after losing 11% last year.


Feb 09 - Grain Gates overtakes RIF as Russia's biggest exporter in new quota (AgriCensus)

- The Moscow-headquartered grain exporter Grain Gates has secured the bulk of the export quota allocations announced by the Russian government on Thursday, overtaking the long-term leader in the space, the trading house RIF, according to an official document seen by Agricensus. The government typically introduces quotas to regulate the pace of exports through the later stages of the marketing year, with the allowance typically reflecting the proportion of exports the company has handled in the year to date. However, in a change to the process that has been used in recent years, the Russian government has allocated 90% of the 24 million mt grain quota for the period from February 15 until June 30.

- That volume, equating to 21.6 million mt, has been handed out between the various exporters active during the marketing year, and the biggest volume was awarded to Grain Gates, a company that is affiliated with Demetra Holding. The volume awarded exceeds 4.2 million mt, or around 19.4% of the total quota.

- The trading house RIF, a company that is affiliated with Dubai-based trader Grain Flower, and was previously known as GTCS, came in second place in the allocation with 3.97 million mt of grains allowed for export. The quota is divided between the exporters based on historical results, meaning that the volume received is proportional to the share of the export company in the first half of the marketing year. That means that, for the first time in around ten years, the previous number one exporting company RIF has been overtaken by Grain Gates, which is now in first place.

- Aston remained in the same third place on the list of Russia's biggest exporters, with almost 2.2 million mt of grain quota, followed by MZK Export, a company that was formed from the forrmer-Viterra team left in Russia after the country invaded neighboring Ukraine in February 2022.

- MZK was allocated 1.3 million mt, or 6% of the awarded volume. Finally, OZK Trading, a company owned partly by the Russian state and the same Demetra holding company that owns Grain Gates, closed out the five biggest exporters list with a 985,748 mt quota.

That means that the first five biggest exporters remain the same as were seen last year, with only a change in leadership, and around 58% - or 12.6 million mt distributed between the five. The remaining 10%, amounting to around 3 million mt, will serve as a reserve, with the largest exporters in the list able to apply to access more volume in the event that they manage to export their entire quota before the marketing year-end.

Multinational traders remain on the list, with Cofco and Louis Dreyfus awarded quotas - Dreyfus appearing in sixteenth place with 170,241 mt, and Cofco down in 161st place with just under 4,300 mt. Last year, Dreyfus was in eighth place with an allocation of 587,000 mt, while Cofco was 59th with 43,276 mt.


Feb 08 - Abundant rain seen bringing relief to Argentina's soybean, corn crops
Argentina's main farmland will receive significant rainfall over the next few days, the Buenos Aires Grains Exchange (BdeC) announced on Wednesday, adding this should boost the country's current soybean and corn crops. In recent weeks, Argentina's top agricultural areas have experienced mostly dry conditions and high temperatures during the Southern Hemisphere summer.

Feb 08 - Column: US farm exports hit three-year low in 2023 as China slows buying -Braun
U.S. exports of agricultural and related products reached a value of $191 billion in 2023, down 10% from 2022’s record as both commodity prices and shipment volumes declined. That marks a three-year low though is similar to the 2021 levels, and it reflects competition from key suppliers, particularly when it comes to satisfying Chinese demand.


Feb 07 - French durum output could drop to new low as sowing drags
French production of durum wheat could fall again this year to a new low this century as time runs out for planting held over from autumn and early field conditions are mixed, crop institute Arvalis said on Tuesday. France harvested its smallest crop since 1997 last year at 1.28 million metric tons as a sharp decline in planting continued. That contributed to a poor crop in Europe, in turn leading Italian buyers to turn to Turkish supplies.

Feb 07 - Cocoa prices seen slipping from recent peaks by end-2024
London cocoa prices are expected to slip back from record highs but still end the year with an annual gain of nearly 10% as the global market's supply deficit persists, a Reuters poll of nine traders and analysts showed on Tuesday. Prices were seen ending 2024 at 3,700 pounds a metric ton, down 10.4% from Monday's close but 9.5% higher than levels seen at the end of 2023, according to the poll's median forecast.


Feb 06 - Brazil second corn planting at fastest pace since records began in 2013 -AgRural
Brazilian farmers have sown 27% of the area expected to be planted with second corn in the center-south, marking the fastest pace for second corn planting since records began in 2013, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday. Sowing of Brazil's second corn, which represents about 75% of the national output in a given year, is up 11% from the previous week, according to AgRural data.

Feb 06 - Brazil farmer selling lags as soy sinks in Chicago - Safras
The sale of Brazil's new soybean crop was estimated at 31.9% of the production projected for the country, 12.6 percentage points below the historical average, according to consultancy Safras & Mercado on Monday. Safras blamed slow Brazilian farmer selling on growers hoping for a market rebound. "A drop in prices completely halted negotiations," said Safras soybean analyst Luiz Fernando Roque. "Growers have been hoarding soy as they awaited better prices that ended up not coming."


Feb 05 - Turkey to discuss 'new mechanism' for Ukraine Black Sea grain exports with Russia - minister
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan will discuss a new mechanism to allow Ukrainian grain exports through the Black Sea with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin during his upcoming visit to Turkey, Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan said on Sunday. Putin is expected to visit Turkey on Feb. 12 to meet Erdogan, a Turkish official previously said, in what will be the Russian leader's first trip to a NATO ally since Moscow's invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

Feb 05 - China to push development of high-yield crops, mechanise to raise food supply
China will boost the development of high-yielding crop varieties to raise production, state media reported on Saturday, citing a key rural policy document, as Beijing pushes for greater use of bio-technology and mechanisation in its food security measures. The world's largest grains importer reported a record corn crop last year and bumper harvests of other grains, but Beijing continues to strive for greater output and lower imports, particularly amid rising tensions with some trade partners, climate-related disasters and military conflicts.


Feb 02 - Ukraine Agri SPIKE_MARKET weekly report

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb @154$->152$
· wheat furs. DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb @162$->160$
· wheat furs. DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Feb-berez @160$->156$
· wheat fur.DAP Danube, Ukraine, Feb @6'850 UAH with VAT

- Ukraine:
· Exports in January amounted to: corn - 2.9 million tons, wheat - 1.5 million tons, barley - 290 thousand tons, soybeans - 312 thousand tons, rape - 320 thousand tons, sunflower - 36 thousand tons, sunflower oil - 525 thousand tons, soybean oil - 22 thousand tons, cake and meal - 421 thousand tons.
· The structure of exports by mode of transport in January: by sea transport 4.2 million tons; by river transport 1.1 million tons; by rail transport 685 thousand tons; by road - 139 thousand tons.
- Europe:
· Imports to the EU for the period from 01.07 to 28.01: wheat - 7.4 million tons (compared to 6.4 million tons last year), corn - 10.2 million tons (compared to 17.4 million tons), barley - 1.3 million tons (compared to 1.4 million tons), soybean - 6.8 million tons (compared to 6.5 million tons), rapeseed - 3.2 million tons (compared to 4.5 million tons), sunflower - 0.4 million tons (compared to 1.7 million tons).
· The share of Ukraine in the structure of European imports from 01.07 to 28.01 was: 68% wheat; 53% barley; 60% corn; 7.3% soybean; 65% rapeseed; 30% sunflower; 92% sunflower oil; 38% rapeseed oil; 35% soybean oil; 36% sunflower meal.

- Prices for corn have decreased in all directions. Corn was traded in the range of 205-208$ CIF Italy, Spain and Egypt.
Prices with delivery to Ukrainian ports adjusted to levels below $ 150 per ton and established at levels 145-148$. The reduction in corn prices was accompanied by a decrease in logistics rates of transportation in Ukraine, so the offer remained stable while reducing prices.
The European market was traded with rail or car delivery in the range of 190-197€ with delivery to Italy and 185-190€ with delivery to Germany. On the western border, prices fluctuated in the range of 130-135€ loaded into a euro train.

- Wheat prices gradually decreased for the whole grain complex. Wheat was traded in the markets of Europe in the range of 214-218$ CIF.
Prices at forage wheat ports varied between 155-160$, depending on the delivery period. Buyers were willing to pay extra for the prompt delivery to have time to close the old sales at a more favorable terms.

- Prices for sunflower in Ukraine remain under pressure from producers due to the increase in their supply volumes. Stocks in factories are increasing, and therefore the pace of purchases by processors is slowing down, leading to an increase in queues.
The market expects simplification of the procedure for obtaining export licenses for sunflower from Ukraine. At a time when processors in Bulgaria are faced with the risk of stopping the work of plants due to insufficient raw materials.

- Prices for sunflower oil in Bulgaria were traded in the range of 800-820 dollars per ton, which is 10 dollars less than last week.

- Soybean prices fell in all directions. The Turkish market began to bargain at prices at $ 500 and below soybeans. Soybean exports from Ukraine remain stable on average within 300-400 thousand tons per month.


Feb 02 - French farmers' union call for end of blockades as anger spreads in Europe
Two of France's main farming unions on Thursday urged protesters who have staged hundreds of tractor blockades across the country to go back home, after the government announced measures to try to quell the anger in a movement that has spread across Europe. While some local grievances vary, the unrest, also seen in Belgium, Portugal, Greece and Germany, has exposed tensions over the impact on farming of the EU's drive to tackle climate change, as well of opening the door to cheap Ukrainian imports to help Kyiv's war effort.

Feb 02 - Brazil 2023/2024 soybean crop forecast lowered to 150.35 mln T - StoneX
Brazilian farmers will harvest a soybean crop of 150.35 million metric tons in the 2023/2024 cycle, agribusiness consultancy Stonex said on Thursday. StoneX again cut the estimate for Brazilian soybean production citing weather issues. The new forecast is 1.6% lower than January's and 4.8% lower from last year's record output, StoneX said.

 

Feb 02 - Turkey sells 150,000 metric tons durum in export tender - traders
Turkish state grain board TMO is believed to have provisionally sold 150,000 metric tons of durum wheat in an export tender for the same volume on Thursday, European traders said. The highest price was assessed at $404.80 a ton FOB, traders said.

Feb 02 - Taiwan buys 89,650 metric tons US-origin milling wheat
The Taiwan Flour Millers' Association purchased an estimated 89,650 metric tons of milling wheat to be sourced from the United States in a tender on Friday, European traders said. The purchase involved various wheat types for shipment from the U.S. Pacific Northwest coast in two consignments.


Feb 01 - Indonesia sets CPO reference price for February at $806.40/mt (AgriCensus)

- The Indonesian government has raised the crude palm oil (CPO) reference price for February 1-29 to $806.40/mt from the previous $774.93/mt, a circular issued by the trade ministry showed Wednesday. The increase effectively raises the payable export levy and duty for CPO by one tier to $85/mt and $33/mt from $75/mt and $18/mt earlier based on the current export tax structure.

- Export taxes for other palm oil products will also increase correspondingly, making Indonesian palm oil exports more expensive.


Period Feb 1-29   Jan 16-31
CPO Ref Price $806.40/mt   $774.93/mt
Product Levy Duty Total Change Levy Duty Total
CPO 85 33 118 25 75 18 93
RBD Palm Olein 65 2 67 12 55 0 55
RBD Palm Oil 68 0 68 10 58 0 58
RBD Palm Stearin 55 0 55 10 45 0 45
Biodiesel 55 0 55 10 45 0 45


Selected palm oil products and corresponding export taxes

As reported by Fastmarkets last week, the new reference price will apply for the whole month of February instead of half of the month as per previous iterations, and follows earlier deliberations by the government to change the frequency of the CPO reference price revisions from biweekly to once a month.

The change also aligns Indonesia's CPO reference price revision frequency with neighbouring Malaysia, who had earlier set its reference price for February at MYR3571.39/mt ($755/mt), with the corresponding export tax for CPO at MYR285.71/mt ($60.42/mt) (1 USD= 4.729 ringgit).

Trade sources had also told Fastmarkets that the government was currently reviewing the formula for the reference price calculation to remove Rotterdam prices, though a decision has yet to be made.

The current formula uses a combination of CPO prices from Bursa Malaysia, ICDX and Rotterdam.

 

Feb 01 - Thai rice export volumes seen down 14.4% in 2024 on lower production
Thailand expects to export 7.5 million metric tons of rice in 2024, down 14.38% year-on-year, due to lower production and increased competition, the commerce ministry said. Rice production is expected to drop 5.87% in 2024, impacted by the El Nino weather phenomenon, the ministry said in a statement.


Feb 01 - EU plans curbs on Ukraine farm imports to calm angry farmers
The European Commission on Wednesday proposed measures to limit agricultural imports from Ukraine and offer greater flexibility on rules for fallow land in a bid to quell protests by angry farmers in France and other EU members. The Commission said it would extend the suspension of import duties on Ukrainian exports for another year to June 2025.

Feb 01 - Argentina farm regions set for heat wave, then scattered rains: grains exchange
Argentina's farm regions are set for a heat wave over the next week, followed by rains that will douse the northern, western and southern regions, but largely miss the center-east zone, the Buenos Aires grains exchange said on Wednesday. "The outlook will start with winds from the tropics, raising the temperature to above normal in most of the agricultural area," the exchange said in its weather report covering the first week of February.


Jan 31 - Farmer protests spread in Europe ahead of EU summit
French and Belgian farmers angry about rising costs, EU environmental policies and cheap food imports blocked highways and access roads to a major container port on Tuesday as the protests spread across Europe. In France, farmers, who have been protesting for over two weeks, stepped up their pressure on the government by blocking highways with their tractors near Paris and setting bales of hay ablaze to partly block access to Toulouse airport.

Jan 31 - Argentina wheat harvest ends up 24% y/y, low prices dent economic impact
Argentine farmers have closed the 2023/24 wheat campaign with a harvest of 15.1 metric tons, slightly lower than initially hoped for but up nearly a quarter versus the drought-hit previous season, the Buenos Aires grains exchange said on Tuesday. In a wrap-up to mark the end of the wheat season, the exchange said planting of the crop had been 5.9 million hectares (14.6 million acres), its lowest in the last five seasons due to dry weather last year that has since reversed with decent rains.


Jan 30 - EU raises 2023/24 wheat stocks outlook on increased supply
The European Commission on Monday raised its forecast for European Union stocks of common wheat, or soft wheat, at the end of the 2023/24 season as upward revisions to harvest production and imports boosted supply. In monthly supply and demand data for cereal and oilseed crops, the Commission increased its projection of EU soft wheat stocks at the end of 2023/24 to 19.1 million metric tons from 18.4 million forecast in December, though that was still below last season's 19.4 million tons.

Jan 30 - Brazil's soybean harvest hits 11%, says AgRural
Brazil's 2023/24 soybean harvest had reached 11% of the planted area as of last Thursday, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, up 5 percentage points from the previous week and above the 5% seen at the same time a year earlier. The week was marked by rains in several states, which slowed work in the fields especially in top grain producing state Mato Grosso but brought some relief to areas that had been grappling with high temperatures and lack of humidity, such as Parana.


Jan 29 - ADM postpones some exec bonuses amid accounting probe
Archer-Daniels-Midland will delay paying performance bonuses to some executives until its financial statements are completed and audited, according to a staff memo seen by Reuters. The delay, detailed in a memo sent to staff on Thursday, comes days after ADM sidelined its chief financial officer and brought in outside lawyers to launch an investigation into accounting practices last week.

Jan 29 - Funds continue cultivating massive CBOT grain, oilseed short - Braun
Speculators have built their most bearish-ever January view across U.S. grains and oilseeds, and the collective net short is among the largest on record, driven by further selling in soybeans and meal last week. Money managers’ combined net short across Chicago-traded corn, wheat, soybeans and soy products, plus Kansas City and Minneapolis wheat, totaled 554,019 futures and options contracts as of Jan. 23.


Jan 26 - Argentina cleared for the first time to export wheat to China (AgriCensus)

- Argentina's Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, and Fisheries announced Friday the country had taken the first steps towards paving the way for future wheat exports to China.
"In an important step for Argentine exports, the General Administration of Customs of the People's Republic of China (GACC) included Argentine companies authorized to export wheat in the Online Quarantine Registration System of Establishments authorized to export vegetables, animals, and their products that enter China," a press release from the ministry read.

- Australia and Canada currently serve as the primary wheat suppliers to the Chinese market, contributing 5.7 million mt and 1.8 million mt, respectively, according to the release.

Despite the challenges of a drought in the previous campaign, Argentina is expected to export 3 million mt of wheat in 2023, and a total harvest of 15.5 million mt is expected for the 2023/24 campaign.

The Buenos Aires Grains Exchange (Bage) said in a report Thursday that it currently sustains a production projection of 15.1 million mt for 2023/2024.

China is projected to import 12.5 million mt of wheat in 2023/24, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA)'s supply and demand estimates report predicted earlier this month.

Market participants Agricensus spoke to said no business has been done yet, and that the first shipment could take some time to occur


Jan 26 - Ukraine Agri SPIKE_MARKET weekly report.

Sold in a week
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Sich-Feb @154$->150$
· DAP corn Danube, Ukraine, Jan-Feb @6'700 UAH with VAT
· DAP corn Mon-Sh. Italy Feb-Berez @220€
· wheat furs. DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Jan-Feb @157$->156$
· rape NE-GMO ISCC DAP sh. Germany, Feb-Berez @415€

Ukraine:
· The share of Asian markets in Ukrainian exports was 18% since October 2023. Thanks to the Ukrainian Navy and the stable operation of the sea corridor, exporters and traders gained more confidence in the organization of shipments over longer distances, which sometimes take up to 40 days on the road.
· Military risks in the Red Sea have already affected the redistribution of Ukrainian export goods flows. Due to the growth of freight in the direction of Asia, the nearest sales markets are already feeling the pressure of Ukrainian exports. The cost of freight for the vessels of the class "Coster" and "Hendi" also has the potential for growth as a result.
World:
· Funds have a significant short position on corn and wheat. Manufacturers and the world have significant reserves, expecting a new crop from South America.

- Corn prices continue to decline along the entire supply chain, from farmers to final processors. Prices in the ports have decreased to the range from 148$ to 152$ depending on the delivery time. Many buyers remain cautious about purchasing because they still have unrealized stocks that were purchased at higher prices.
Prices of CIF in Spain for delivery in March-April amounted to about $ 212-214.

On the Italian market with the delivery in April-June, prices dropped to a level of 195€ to 200€. Processors in the European market have supplies to cover the needs by April.

- The wheat market continues to keep the premium in price for food wheat. For food wheat are willing to pay 25-30$ more than forage, and this difference depends on the quality of the product. Wheat prices mark a decrease throughout the supply chain. In particular, with delivery to the port of Odessa buyers buy forage wheat at levels from 152$ to 156$. The logistics award for delivery to the ports of the Danube is up to $ 10.
The first indicative prices for a new crop on the European market begin to appear. Sellers can sell 11% new crop wheat on the Italian market at a price that is 10€ higher than the prices of the current old crop.

- Prices for sunflower sharply adjusted and did not give sellers the opportunity to enjoy further growth. Prices with delivery to processing decreased to 1500 UAH with VAT (equivalent 35$ per ton without VAT). During the last week, manufacturers have switched their attention to the sale of sunflower, leaving the grain group unattended. A significant supply and logistics queues at processing plants added even more pressure to prices. The raw material coverage of the plants has improved significantly over the last week.

- Soybean prices remained unchanged in all directions. In the ports of soya traded up to 440-445$. The border was traded to the level of 370-375€ or equivalent of 410$ delivery in Ukrainian cars.


Jan 26 - Forecasts for Argentina's soy, corn crops up due to more rainfall
Argentina's current soybean and corn harvests were upwardly revised on Thursday, as expected yields from both key grains crops benefited from more rainfall. The Buenos Aires Grains Exchange now sees soybeans from the 2023/24 harvesting season at 52.5 million metric tons, or up about 1% compared to the previous forecast.

Jan 26 - Fight brewing over Biden climate funds that help farmers in Republican-leaning states
An effort by Republican U.S. lawmakers to reallocate $18 billion in climate-friendly agriculture funding under President Joe Biden's signature climate law would shift money away from programs that primarily benefit farmers in Republican-leaning states, a Reuters analysis found. The Inflation Reduction Act money, earmarked for U.S. Department of Agriculture-designated "climate-smart" farm practices, is intended to support Biden's agriculture climate agenda, which relies heavily on storing carbon in the soil and lowering emissions through sustainable farming techniques.


Jan 25 - Angry French farmers block roads, spray manure at public building
Protesting farmers blocked several roads across France on Wednesday, set bales of hay alight and sprayed liquid manure at a local prefecture to press the government to loosen regulations and help protect them from cheap imports and rising costs. Farmers said the protests, with long lines of tractors snarling roads, would continue as long as their demands are not met, posing the first major challenge for new Prime Minister Gabriel Attal.

Jan 25 - India's corn supplies tightening on strong local demand - Louis Dreyfus exec
Strong domestic demand is tightening India's corn supplies, with the country's consumption of the animal feed ingredient seen growing by up to 2 million metric tons a year, a senior executive of global trading firm Louis Dreyfus said. India has been a key corn exporter in Asia, supplying buyers in Southeast Asia, but shipments have dwindled in recent years amid rising local consumption.


Jan 25 - Russia on course to smash records as it expands 2023/24 wheat exports (AgriCensus)

- Russian wheat exports have become more diversified through the first half of 2023/24 compared to the same period of the previous year, indicating that the country has retaken its status as the cheapest origin globally, while concerns over potential sanctions have dwindled, Agricensus analysis of export data shows. The shift in export destinations was driven by the price competitiveness of easily accessible Russian supplies amid bumper harvests, plus increased demand in several countries due to supply disruptions from rival suppliers.

- Russia has ended the first six months of the current season with a new record for wheat exports at the half way point of the marketing year, building on last year's biggest ever export figures and supplying more than 26 million mt to countries outside the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) bloc. That's 17%, or 3.8 million mt, more than a year ago at the same stage.

The number of countries to which Russia has supplied wheat has now reached 67 this season during the reporting period, compared to 57 a year earlier. Available statistics show that the top four consistently large export markets for Russian wheat including Turkey, Egypt, Iran, and Saudi Arabia - although all have reported decreased supplies versus the previous year as competition for Russian flows has increased from other destinations.
- Turkey retained its position as the main importer of Russian wheat in the first half of the 2023/24 season, purchasing 3.9 million mt, down 2.4% year-on-year.
- Egypt ranked second in the list of wheat importers, but imports of Russian wheat have fallen by 22%, or 0.8 million mt, year-on-year to 2.9 million mt.

On the contrary, the volumes shipped to Southeast Asian destinations have markedly increased in the first half of the marketing year, mainly due to Bangladesh, Indonesia, as well as Pakistan.
- Indonesia stepped into the top ten purchasing almost 1 million mt of wheat since the beginning of the season in July, compared to zero imports for the same period of the previous year.
- That is reflected in a sharp reduction in the pull for Australian and Argentinian wheat.

Despite complaints from some trade sources that they continue to face difficulties importing Russian origin, the data shows that more buyers still see it as the best option.
- A similar drift has affected Bangladesh's imports from Russia, with volumes up year-on-year.
- Moreover, supplies to some countries in North and South America and the Pacific region increased significantly or were resumed – Mexico and Brazil increased imports to 500,000 mt each.
- After a three-year break, shipments have also begun to Malaysia and, for the first time in four seasons, to Venezuela.
- Brazil imported a record volume of wheat from Russia during the first 6 months of 2023/24, mainly replenishing the supply gap left by Argentina during a production crisis.

However, Russia may face increased competition in maintaining its export pace to Brazil in the second half of the marketing year amid partial recovery production in Argentina.
- As for Mexico, Russia has previously exported large volumes of wheat to the country, but exports dwindled from 2019/20 to 2021/22. Russia returned 'in full force' to the Mexican market in 2022/23, exporting 600,000 mt, and is now on pace to set a new marketing year record in 2023/24 with more than 500,000 mt in the first 6 months.

Despite the greater distance from Russian ports to Western Hemisphere markets compared to other competitors, lower Russian export prices have also overcome the freight advantage of these exporters.
- Cheaper Russian wheat origin as well as the country's aggressive export drive have meant exports to North African and Sub-Saharan African countries grew over the same period.
- Algeria, Tunisia, and Morocco, significant players in Nothern Africa’s wheat trade, continued to shift away from French and other European origins in favor of Russian wheat, as it has been often more affordable.

This has lead to a decline in French wheat exports to 5.6 million mt in 2023/24 from over 9 million mt in the previous year.
- Meanwhile, Ukraine, the main rival from the Black Sea region, is still down about 30% year-on-year due to challenges exporting to Africa and Asia from its deep seaports, giving a head start to Russian replacement.

Overall, in 2023/24, Russia is set to hit a new global export record at 51 million mt of wheat, up 3.5 million mt from the prior year. That comes as the country started the season with record carry-over stocks, along with another bumper crop and the volumes of wheat taken from the occupied Ukrainian territories, which allows to maintain the record export pace.


Jan 25 - Malaysian AM, PM Cash Market Prices for Palm Oil Unavailable

- Data for a.m. and p.m. Malaysian cash market prices for palm oil are unavailable due to a holiday.


Jan 24 - Accounting probe hits ADM as crop glut, lower margins point to tough 2024
An investigation into accounting practices in Archer-Daniels-Midland's Nutrition segment could not come at a worse time for the company as sinking crop prices look set to erode profit for its core grain trading and processing businesses this year. Before news of the accounting issues broke and sent ADM shares tumbling 24% on Monday, the biggest fall since 1929, according to the Center for Research in Security Prices, the company had been forecasting the Nutrition unit it has been expanding for much of the past decade would return to profit growth in 2024.

Jan 24 - China to encourage hog farmers to reduce capacity after price slump
China will "guide" farmers to reduce hog production capacity as it steps up regulation of the industry, the agriculture ministry said on Tuesday, after an aggressive expansion drive led to an oversupply of pigs and heavy losses. Big agribusinesses in the world's top pork producer havemodernised farms and expanded pig herds so rapidly in recent years that a downturn in demand led to plummeting hog prices, mounting losses, and rising debt last year.


Jan 23 - Argentina's 2023 soybean crush lowest level in 19 years (BCR AgriCensus)

- Argentina's soybean crush fell 29% in 2023 to 27 million mt, the lowest level since 2004, according to a report by the Rosario Grains Exchange (BCR).

In 2022, the country's crush volumes totaled 38 million mt.
With Argentina’s soybean production 56% lower year on year, the local vegoil industry suffered a severe blow, but imported soybeans limited losses, BCR said.
 
In 2023, more than 36% of crushing in Argentina was made with soybeans imported through the temporary import regime, a new record.
Under this regime, soybeans are imported for industrial processing and later products with a higher added value (oil, meal, biodiesel, glycerin, among others) are exported.
 “Soybean imports made it possible to reduce the idle capacity of the vegoil industry while helping to sustain the level of employment and support national exports,” BCR said.
 
- The idle capacity of 54% recorded last year was the highest in the history of Argentina's vegoil industry, but the figure would have jumped to around 70% without imports, BCR said.
Brazil increased its share in Argentina’s soybean imports from 9% in 2022 to 39% in 2023.
Soybeans imported from Paraguay, Argentina’s most frequent supplier, were also at record levels, according to the exchange.

 

Jan 23 - Output from Brazil's second corn crop expected to decline
Forecasters expect lower production from Brazil's second corn crop because of smaller planted area, lower investment by farmers and the intense El Niño weather pattern, which brought drought to central Brazil and excess rains to the south. According to a report by agribusiness consultancy Cogo on Monday, Brazil will reap 118.5 million metric tons of corn in the 2023/2024 crop year, down from an initial expectation of 129.6 million tons.

Jan 23 - Australia set to harvest bigger crops after rains defy El Nino
Australia is poised to produce much more wheat and other crops this year than previously thought after rainfall confounded expectations that an El Nino weather pattern would maintain dry and hot conditions, analysts and industry associations said. Australia is one of the world's biggest agricultural exporters, shipping goods from wheat and barley to cotton and beef.


Jan 22 - USDA confirms first big US soy sale to China since mid-December
The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Friday confirmed private sales of 297,000 metric tons of U.S. soybeans to China, the first soybean sales announcement under its daily reporting rules since Dec. 19 and the first to the world's top buyer of the oilseed since Dec. 15. The sales announcement came a day after U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack met with China's Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, Tang Renjian.

Jan 22 - Funds step up short bets in CBOT corn, soy, meal off weighty USDA data
- Braun
Speculators eased concerns over global grain and oilseed inventories late last year, but their selling enthusiasm, especially in Chicago-traded corn, soybeans and soybean meal, has accelerated this month as U.S. government outlooks corroborate the supply comfort. Most-active CBOT corn futures shed 3.4% in the four-day trading week ended Jan. 16, driven by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s heavy corn supply outlook issued on Jan. 1


Jan 19 - Brazil's domestic prices fall with on hold demand and great supply (Conab-AgriCensus)

- Prices in Brazil's domestic soybean spot market have been on a sharp downward trend in 2024, as the market regulates an environment of lukewarm demand and ever greater supply.
Brazil’s FAS Paranaguá price fell from BRL147/bag ($496.95/mt) on January 2 to stand at BRL122/bag ($412.44/mt) on Thursday - a 17% decline.

- In the biggest producing state, Mato Grosso, the spot price based in Rondonópolis fell from BRL126/bag ($425.96/mt) to BRL108/bag ($365.11/mt) during the same period, where trade was done at the same price. That decline has come despite mounting worries over the state of the crop, with yield losses reported in the state due to drought and leading to the Mato Grosso’s Economy and Agriculture Institute (IMEA) to expect 39 million mt to be harvested according to a report released on Monday. That represents a 10.9% reduction compared to the initial estimate of 43.8 million mt, and would be 13.9% lower than the 45.3 million mt collected last year, according to the same database.

- Part of the explanation can be found in Brazil’s export prices, as international demand is responsible for the biggest share of the country’s soybean destination, taking 65.8% of last season’s total supply, according to Brazil’s Supply Company (Conab). FOB Paranaguá outright prices on February loading were assessed at $415.95/mt as of Thursday, again in sharp contrast to $466/mt on January 2, as the Chinese demand – Brazil’s main export destination – remains lukewarm.


Jan 19 - Ukraine Agri SPIKE_MARKET weekly report

Sold in a week
· wheat 12.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, January @190$
· wheat 11.5pro DAP Odessa, Ukraine, February @180$
· feed wheat DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Jan-Feb @164$->163$->160$
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Sich-Feb @154$

- Ukraine:
· Export shipments with the support of the Ukrainian Navy slowed down. Total exports by water transport in January amounted to 2.3 million tons as of 15.01.
- South America:
· Reuters Agency increased the forecast for the harvest in Argentina to 56.7 million tons, which is higher than 55 million tons, as stated in the USDA report.
· Favorable weather in Brazil with sufficient rainfall increases expectations regarding record corn harvest.
· The weather stress for the first corn crop in Brazil is regarded by the market as insignificant. The first corn crop in Brazil is only 21% of the total crop.
- China:
· China has approved additional 8 GMOs of soybean varieties and 6 GMOs of corn varieties for domestic production, which has created additional pressure on prices.
· Imports of corn to China in December amounted to 4.95 million tons, which is 471% more than in December last year. Annual imports in 2023 were 32% more than in the previous year.

- The prices for corn in the world are on the 3-year day. Significant remains in the world and expectations of a record harvest from South America create a significant pressure on prices. Buyers choose a waiting strategy for further price cuts by sellers in order to find sales of balances.
Prices decreased in the direction of the Black Sea ports by 5-7$ per ton. Prices in the final sales markets of North Africa, Spain, Italy and the Middle East also fell to $ 10 per ton. Sellers are hard to find sales in the world market. There is a "price inversion" in the world corn market (when future prices become lower than current ones).

- Prices of feed wheat fell to 10$ per ton after corn prices. Food wheat prices have gained support through active purchases by Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Algeria and Japan. The premium on food wheat increased to $30, at a non-variable food price and lower feed price.

- Sunflower prices are fixed up to 10$ per ton with delivery to the domestic processing in Ukraine. For the period from September to December 2023, Ukraine exported only 133 thousand tons of oil. The main market was Turkey.

- Global soybean prices continue to decline. Prices have decreased to 20$ per ton in all directions of soybean sales for Ukrainian producers.


Jan 19 - China’s 2023 corn imports surge to 27.1m mt on record Dec levels (customs & Agricensus)

- China’s corn imports in 2023 came to 27.13 million mt, a 31.6% jump from the level in 2022 following a record December performance, figures from the country’s General Administration of Customs (GACC) showed Thursday. Corn imports in December reached 4.95 million mt – the highest monthly volume ever recorded – exceeding the previous high set in November at 3.59 million mt and over 400% higher than levels in December 2022. The jump comes as attractive prices and a bumper harvest from South American supplier Brazil kept supply plentiful, prompting buyers to pick up more of the grain, even as China’s domestic corn production in 2023 also rose by 4.2% on the year to 288.8 million mt.  

The total volume imported in 2023 comes in just shy of the all-time high of 28.4 million mt reached in 2021.

- Meanwhile, China’s wheat imports in December fell by 7.6% on the month to 610,000 mt, although total wheat imports for 2023 rose by 21.5% on the year to 12.1 million mt.
- Total barley imports in 2023 also rose by 96.6% from 2022 to 11.3 million mt, with December levels coming in at 1.66 million mt, an increase of 36.1% from November. China’s barley imports have been relatively firm over the last few months, coming in above 1 million mt since September, with the lifting of restrictions on Australian barley back in August also contributing to the higher volume entering the country.    
- On the other hand, total sorghum imports fell drastically by 49% from 2022 to 5.21 million mt, after December’s imports came in 35.2% less than November at 350,000 mt.
- Lastly, edible vegetable oil imports in December were estimated at 810,000 mt, 12% less than in November, bringing total edible vegoil imports for 2023 to 9.81 million mt – 51% higher than in 2022. Palm olein imports in December fell by 34% on the month to 290,000 mt, with the total volume for 2023 coming to 4.33 million mt, 27% higher on the year. Rapeseed oil imports also fell in December to 230,000 mt from November’s 270,000 mt, with annual cumulative imports jumping sharply by 122% from 2022 to 2.36 million mt. Conversely, soybean oil imports rose to 60,000 mt from 40,000 mt in November, bringing total imports for the year to 400,000 mt, 16% higher than 2022.


Jan 19 - Strategie Grains cuts forecasts for EU wheat exports, 2024 harvest
Consultancy Strategie Grains lowered its estimate for soft wheat production in the European Union this year by more than 2 million metric tons, mainly due to a cut in Germany where the area sown is now expected to fall to its lowest level since 1999. In a monthly cereal report, Strategie Grains forecast EU soft wheat production at 122.7 million tons in the 2024/25 season, down from 124.8 million forecast in December and 2.6% below last year's harvest.

Jan 19 - China's embrace of GMO crops gains momentum with new import, planting approvals
China on Thursday approved additional varieties of genetically modified soybeans and corn for import and production while expanding their planting areas nationwide, as part of a drive to improve food security and reduce imports. The agriculture ministry approved the domestic production of six more varieties of genetically modified corn, two of soybeans and one of cotton, and another two of gene-edited soybeans, a notice on the ministry's website said.


Jan 18 - FranceAgriMer cuts 2023/24 wheat export forecasts on lower demand
Farm office FranceAgriMer on Wednesday lowered its forecast for French wheat exports in 2023/24, citing lower demand from China and increased competition from Black Sea exporters mainly in Egypt and southern Europe. In a supply and demand outlook, the office forecast French wheat exports outside the European Union at 10.1 million metric tons from 10.2 million projected last month, now 0.5% below last season's level.

Jan 18 - Egypt's wheat imports rebound after dip in global prices
Egypt's wheat imports rose by more than a million metric tons in 2023, data seen by Reuters shows, with traders citing a dip in global prices from highs reached after Russia invaded Ukraine. One of the world's top wheat importers, Egypt uses the grain it buys for heavily subsidised bread available to more than two thirds of the North African nation's 105 million population.


Jan 18 - Egypt's GASC buys 300k Russian, 60k French wheat in tender (AgriCensus)

Egypt’s state grain importer picked up 300,000 mt of Russian wheat at $265/mt FOB and 60,000 mt of French wheat at $262.50/mt FOB for March shipment, according to market sources.
The state-backed General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) booked five positions of 60,000 mt each, paying $265/mt FOB or $285.67/mt CFR on average, for March 15-30 delivery.

ME Solaris Commodities, Grain Flower, Aston Agro-Industrial SA, and Olam were among the suppliers, with four loads shipping from Kavkaz and one from Novorossiysk.

Freight for one cargo came in at $21.15/mt, while the rest were priced slightly lower at $20.20/mt.

In addition, Viterra sold 60,000 mt at $262.50/mt FOB or $284.50/mt CFR, with freight at $22/mt.

In its last tender that closed on January 9, GASC booked 360,000 mt of Russian-origin wheat at $265/mt FOB for February 29-March 11 shipment.
Along with that, Egypt picked up 60,000 mt of Ukrainian wheat at $282.35/mt FOB Constanta for the same shipment period.


Jan 17 - NOPA December US soy crush jumps to record 195.328 million bushels
U.S. soybean processors crushed more soybeans in December than any previous month on record, closing out a banner year for the industry with their three largest crush months ever, according to National Oilseed Processors Association data released on Tuesday. NOPA members, which account for around 95% of soybeans crushed in the United States, processed 195.328 million bushels of soybeans last month, compared with 189.038 million bushels processed in November and up 10% from the December 2022 crush of 177.505 million bushels.

Jan 17 - Argentina set for soy, corn 'super harvest' as estimates keep rising
Argentina is set for a corn and soy "super harvest" with production forecasts likely to keep climbing, a senior analyst at the Rosario grains exchange told Reuters on Tuesday, a major boost to the embattled grains-producing South America country. Cristian Russo, head of agricultural estimates at the Rosario grains exchange, said that both corn and soy had "very good chances" of topping the body's current harvest forecasts of 59 million metric tons and 52 million tons respectively.


Jan 16 - Brazil February soybean premiums plunge on weak China demand (AgriCensus)

- Soybean premiums out of Brazil, the largest producer of the oilseed, have plunged in the last week, dropping more than 60 c/bu amid pressure from weak Chinese demand, the start of the harvest season and other local factors, market sources told Agricensus.

- Offers of Brazilian cargoes for February shipment were reported by industry sources at a premium of 85-95 c/bu Monday, with trade rumored Friday at 85 c/bu, compared with 140-145 c/bu over March CME futures CFR China last Monday.

For other shipment windows, CFR China premiums for Brazil also fell, albeit to a lesser extent, with offers for March reported at a 55-60 c/bu premium over March futures Monday, compared with an 80-90 c/bu premium seen last Monday, while premiums for other months also fell between 8 c/bu and 23 c/bu during the period. The Paranaguá paper market followed the same path, dropping from a trade done on January 3 for February loading at parity with CME’s March futures contract to a 60 c/bu discount to March futures last Thursday.

Bids for February loading, meanwhile, went from a 15 c/bu discount on January 3 to a 90 c/bu discount as of last Friday.

As in past years, a major factor driving premiums lower in Brazil at this time of the year is the beginning of the soybean harvest, which naturally brings prices down as Chinese buyers know that producing countries’ storage capacity will be pressured by the harvest, according to Ranieri Pasinato Junior, a market analyst for Zairam Agrocomm Brokerage.
“But this time, some other elements are also at play, including South America's huge soybean production, a smaller Chinese demand amid poor crush margins and sufficient soybean stocks, and more competitive pricing of Argentinian soybeans,” Pasinato Junior said.

Another factor is the still substantial production forecast in Brazil, despite recent downgrades by analysts.
“Brazil would need to lose 20% of its initial production estimate so South America would have the same amount produced as last year, and the most pessimistic projections show it around 10%,” said Aldo Lobo of Origem Brokerage.

Meanwhile, potential logistical difficulties in Paranaguá, where there are still a lot of old crop to ship, could also have pushed the premiums down, according to Brazil-based sources.

In addition, trading houses are thought to have bought a lot of soybeans for this period that they now need to sell to China in February, but the window for doing this is shrinking, adding further pricing pressure, Eduardo Vanin, lead soybean analyst and brokerage and consultancy Agrinvest said.

Overall, brokers in both Argentina and China that Agricensus spoke to pointed to poor Chinese demand as the major reason for the situation, with the sources saying no one has any idea whether or when the demand could pick up.

Although China’s annual soybean imports saw their first year-on-year increase since 2020 last year, the country’s loss-making hog industry has led to weak soymeal demand and prices, which has in turn suppressed demand for the crop.

In a sign of its lukewarm demand for soybeans, China reported around 6.5 million mt of soybean stocks as of January 5, a 6.2% growth from the previous week and a 19% and 46% rise from a month and a year ago.

Soybean arrivals in January are expected to reach 7.5 million mt, which could continue to push up the soybean stock level, according to CNGOIC.

The plunge in CFR China soybean premium for Brazil meanwhile may not continue for much longer, as Brazilian farmers seem unwilling to sell given the low prices and subsequent horrible profitability, said Vanin.

As for domestic trade, farmer selling has been lukewarm, market sources said.
"We have seen only punctual trades at this beginning of 2024 as farmers are selling from hand to mouth, only to keep the cash flowing," said Alaíde Ziemmer, AgRural's market analyst..


Jan 16 - Brazil's AgRural lowers soybean crop forecast as harvest advances
Brazil's 2023/24 soybean crop is expected to reach 150.1 million metric tons, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, lowering a December forecast of 159.1 million tons as the harvest advances in the world's top supplier of the oilseed. The consultancy cited adverse weather conditions for the downgraded forecast.

Jan 16 - 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.


Jan 15 - India has no plans to import wheat for now - trade minister
India does not plan to import wheat and its farmers are likely to harvest a bumper crop that will boost stockpiles in the world's second-biggest producer of the staple, the trade minister said on Saturday. "Ground reports indicate that the crop is quite good and this year's production is expected at a record 114 million metric tons," Piyush Goyal told reporters.

Jan 15 - US corn stocks swell as world recovers from tighter supplies
U.S. corn inventories last month swelled to their largest level since 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Friday, as global supplies recover from multi-year lows. World grain supplies are becoming more comfortable after tightening due to the war in Ukraine, a major corn and wheat producer, and unfavorable crop weather.


Jan 12 - Algeria's OAIC buys up to 350k mt of durum wheat (OAIC AgriCensus)

 

- Algeria's state grain importer has booked at least 350,000 mt of durum wheat in a tender for February-March shipment, trade sources said on Thursday.

The Office Algerien Interprofessional des Cereales (OAIC) has bought at least 350,000 mt of durum, paying around $450-455/mt CFR for panamax vessels and around $470/mt CFR for handysize parcels. The biggest volumes are expected to be sourced mainly from Canada, but at least one cargo each is expected to be of Australian and Mexican origin.

The cargo is set to be shipped between February 1-15, February 16-29, and March 1-15, March 16-31.

In its previous tender, which closed December 6, OAIC booked up to 475,000-500,000 mt of durum for January-February shipment, paying in the range of $455/mt to $470/mt CFR, depending on origin.


Jan 12 - Ukraine Agri SPIKE_MARKET weekly report

Sold in a week
· feed wheat DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Jan-Feb @164$
· corn DAP Odessa, Ukraine, Sich-Feb @159$
· Soybean GMO DAP Danube, Ukraine, Jan @19'200 UAH with VAT

- Ukraine:
· In January, exports of grain, oil and processing products as of 10.01 amounted to: corn - 1,037 thousand tons, wheat - 377 thousand tons, barley - 96 thousand tons, soybeans - 70 thousand tons, rape - 134 thousand tons, sunflower - 7 thousand tons, sunflower oil - 174 thousand tons, soybean oil - 9 thousand tons, cake and sunflower meal - 153 thousand tons, cake and soybean meal - 13 thousand tons.
· Share of Ukraine in the structure of grain imports to Europe from 01/07: 1st place on wheat imports - 3.2 million tons (66% of total imports); 1st place on barley imports - 608 thousand tons (52% of total imports); 1st place on corn imports - 5.1 million tons (57% of total imports).
· Share of Ukraine in the structure of oil imports to Europe from 01/07: 3rd place on soybean imports - 429 thousand tons (7.2% of total imports); 1st place on rapeseed imports - 1.8 million tons (64% of total imports); 2nd place on sunflower imports - 107 thousand tons (31% of total imports).

- The activity of the corn supply on the world market added to the pressure on the prices of the final sales markets on the CIF basis; in some directions, prices have adjusted by 2-3$ over the last week. In Ukrainian deep-sea ports, corn on the part of buyers is 154-158$ CPT and 180-182$ FOB. Demand in European countries is gradually recovering; customer levels in Italy are 205-215€ DAP depending on transport and delivery period.

- Wheat is actively traded in Ukrainian deep-sea ports; the demand for feed wheat of 158-162$ DAP, the food premium is from 15 to 20$. Prices for wheat in the Constanta port (Romania) remain unchanged. Demand of buyers in the Italian market at levels of 227-230€ DAP for wheat with a protein content of 11%, 210-215€ DAP / 229-230$ CIF per protein of 10.5%

- Sunflower trade is focused on the domestic market at 320-345$ (equiv. without VAT) depending on the quality and region of delivery. Despite the slight strengthening of prices and the presence of logistics in the direction of Bulgaria and Romania (which in the previous marketing season were the main export markets for Ukrainian sunflower), due to the long procedure for obtaining export licenses, sellers are in no hurry to fix transactions.
Actively traded products of processing. The price of sunflower oil is kept in the range of 820-825$ DAP Bulgaria. Price levels of sunflower cake in the direction of northern Italy 265-270€ DAP.

- In the Italian market for the last week soybeans lost up to 5€. Demand for GMO soybeans towards the western border of Ukraine at 370-380€ DAP delivery by wagons or dump trucks. In Ukrainian ports soya has not undergone changes and traded in the range of 450-470$ (300 UAH with VAT).


Jan 12 - Brazil 2023/2024 soybean crop view slashed by 7.5 mln T - Patria
Brazil's 2023/2024 soybean crop will total 143.18 million metric tons, 7.5 million tons below a previous forecast of 150.7 million tons of production, according to a new report by Patria Agronegocios on Thursday. Brazil's total corn crop will reach 110.29 million tons, down from the 112.51 million tons in a previous forecast, Patria said, citing climate risk.

Jan 12 - Trade’s lack of direction on US corn, soy crops could set up surprise - Braun
The market could be setting itself up for a surprise on Friday amid the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s data onslaught since analysts are expecting virtually no changes to last year’s U.S. corn and soybean crop estimates, which are typically the day’s most sought-after numbers. The trade pegs 2023 U.S. corn production at a record 15.226 billion bushels and soybean output at a four-year low of 4.127 billion bushels.


Jan 11 - Brazil's Conab cuts soy forecast, still expects record crop
Brazilian farmers will produce a record soybean output in the 2023/24 cycle even after bad weather led crop agency Conab on Wednesday to cut expected production by some 5 million metric tons. Conab said the El Niño pattern had brought excessive heat and dryness in the center of Brazil and too much rain in the south.

Jan 11 - Malaysia palm output to improve this year on improved labour availability
Malaysia's palm oil production is expected to improve this year as a labour shortage eases, though challenges remain as planters seek to comply with European and U.S. regulations targeting links to deforestation and forced labour in the commodity's supply chain, industry officials said at a seminar. The country's palm oil sector, which relies on foreign workers for 70% of its plantation workforce, has seen a severe labour crunch in recent years, in part due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Jan 11 - Conab cuts Brazil soybean output to 155.3m mt, corn to 117.6m mt (AgriCensus)

- Brazilian food agency Conab slashed its soybean crop estimates by 3.1% to 155.3 million mt and cut its corn output projection by 0.8% to 117.6 million mt in a monthly update published Wednesday. In December, Conab pegged the country’s soybean crop at 160.2 million mt. while corn output was estimated at 118.5 million mt. Once again, the weather woes weighed on the country's forecast, which did not take into account the recent rainy days that are expected to soften the impacts of the earlier lack of rain on crops.

- Poorly distributed rainfall and high temperatures harmed both planting and crop development, the agency said. In addition to high volumes of rain in the south, these weather setbacks delayed sowing. The country's total oilseeds and grain production is now projected at 306.4 million mt, a 1.9% decline from last month’s 312.3 million mt estimates and down 4.2% from the 319.8 million mt record for 2022/23. The weather conditions have also prompted some producers to switch to other crops, leading to a reduction in the area compared to December’s report, Conab added. The country’s planted area was pegged at 78.7 million ha, 0.1% below the previous report and 0.3% higher than the 78.5 million ha sown in the 2022/23 crop season.

Soybean
- The new soybean estimate is 4.2% lower than the initial 162 million mt forecast. But the soybean production estimates are also 0.4% higher than 2022/23's 154.6 million mt record crop.
Brazil's sown area estimates are 0.1% lower than December’s projection at 45.2 million ha, a 2.7% increase from the 44.1 million ha area sown in 2022/23. Yield estimates dropped by 3% on the month to 3,431 kilos/ha from the previous 3,535 kilos/ha projection and are 2.2% down year over year.

- Conab lowered Brazil's 2024 soybean export estimates to 98.45 million mt from 101.5 million mt last month, which represents a 3.2% year-on-year drop. In 2023, Brazil exported a record 101.8 million mt, above the 100 million mt projected last month and a 29.3% gain when compared to the 78.7 million mt sent abroad in 2022. Brazil's 2024 soybean crushing estimates remained unchanged at 54.3 million mt.

- The 2023 final figure reached 52.1 million mt, slightly above the 52 million mt projected in December, and 9.2% above the 47.7 million mt processed in 2022. Brazil’s 2024 soymeal production forecast rose to 41.1 million mt from December’s 41 million mt projection. In 2023, soymeal output amounted to 40.6 million mt, above the 40 million mt previous projection and up 8.2% from the 37.5 million mt production from 2022. Soymeal exports forecast for the current year remained unchanged at 21.5 million mt.

- In 2023, shipments totaled 22.6 million mt, surpassing 2022’s 20.3 million mt volume by 11.3%, while last month, exports were pegged at 21.6 million. Conab kept its soyoil output estimates unchanged at 10.7 million mt in 2024. Last year’s production amounted to 10.5 million mt, a 12.9% gain from the 9.3 million mt seen in 2022.  

- Soyoil 2024 export projection was trimmed to 1.5 million mt from the previous 1.6 million mt forecast. In 2023, shipments totaled 2.3 million mt, below the 2.4 million mt projection made in December and the 2.5 million mt shipments from 2022.

Corn
- Conab's new estimates for Brazil’s corn crop production in 2023/24 are 10.9% lower than last year’s crop record of 131.9 million mt. Last month’s estimate was 119 million mt. The agency cut its summer crop output estimate by 3.7% to 24.38 million mt from last month’s 25.3 million mt. The new figure is 10.9% below the 27.37 million mt harvested in 2022/23. Second crop safrinha production remained unchanged at 91.2 million mt, down 10.9% year over year.

- Brazil's total corn area is now seen at 21 million ha from last month’s 21.1 million ha estimates, a 5.6% loss from 2022/23's 22.26 million ha. The summer crop area was cut to 3.9 million ha, a 1.6% loss from the previous 4 million ha projection, down by 10.7% from 2022/23's 4.4 million ha. The second corn crop safrinha area was unchanged at 16.4 million ha, 4.5% lower than the 17.2 million ha sown in 2022/23.  

- Brazil sent abroad a record 56 million mt of corn in 2023, becoming the world’s biggest exporter, a 20.2% gain from the 46.6 million mt shipments from 2022. Conab reduced this year’s shipment projection to 35 million mt from the 38 million mt previously estimated. Brazil's domestic demand forecast for 2024 was slightly reduced to 84.3 million mt from last month’s 84.5 million mt projection. That compares to 79.6 million mt in 2023, a 5.9% year-over-year increase.


Jan 10 - Argentina rains and mild temperatures to benefit soy, corn
Argentina's 2023/24 soybean and corn crops will see a boost in January due to rains and moderate temperatures for the Southern Hemisphere summer, the Buenos Aires Grains Exchange said in its monthly weather report on Tuesday. Argentina is one of the world's top exporters of soybean oil and meal, and the third-largest exporter of corn.

Jan 09 - Brazil's soybean harvest kicks off with low yields in Mato Grosso
Brazilian soybean farmers have begun to reap their 2023/24 soybean crop, covering some 0.6% of the national planted area as of last Thursday, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday. Field work is more advanced in top grain state Mato Grosso, where yields "are much lower than normal" after hot and dry weather destroyed part of the crop.

Jan 09 - Unseasonable rains in Ivory Coast lift cocoa outlook, farmers say
Unseasonable rains in most of Ivory Coast's cocoa regions last week are expected to boost both the main crop and the April-to-September mid-crop, farmers said on Monday. The world's top cocoa producer is in its dry season, which runs officially from mid-November to March when rains are usually scarce.


Jan 08 - Brazil's soy exports forecast to rise in January despite possible shortages
Brazilian soy exports will reach at least 1.3 million metric tons in January, a sharp increase from the 940,000 tons exported in the same month last year, according to projections released on Friday by Anec, a grain exporters group. Brazil starts planting its soybeans around September and normally harvests the crop in the first two months of the following year. Dry weather, however, delayed some planting last year and will affect the harvesting of the 2023/2024 crop.

Jan 08 - Polish farmers to suspend protest at key Ukraine border crossing
Polish farmers have decided to suspend a protest at the border crossing with Ukraine at Medyka after the government agreed to their demands, interia.pl website reported on Saturday citing the local province governor. Polish truck drivers have been blocking several crossings with Ukraine since Nov. 6, demanding that the European Union reinstate a system whereby Ukrainian companies obtain permits to operate in the bloc.


Jan 05 - Ukraine Agri SPIKE_MARKET report

Sold in a week
· feed wheat DAP PD.-zh. Romania, Jan-Feb @210$
· corn DAP Odessa, Jan-Feb @160$->159$->161$->160$->159$

- Ukraine:
· Export of grain, oil and processed products in the first 4 days of 2024 amounted to: corn - 388 thousand tons, wheat - 185 thousand tons, barley - 32 thousand tons, soybean - 26 thousand tons, rape - 20 thousand tons, sunflower - 3 thousand tons, sunflower oil - 60 thousand tons, soybean oil - 1 thousand tons, cake and sunflower meal - 28 thousand tons, soybean meal - 3 thousand tons.
· In December 2023, total exports of grain, oil and processed products amounted to about 7.3 million tons.
· From 01 to 03 January, the passage of agricultural products for export through automobile checkpoints of 1.4 thousand tons; for comparison, in December for the same period, this figure was 39.4 thousand tons, and in November 51.1 thousand tons.

- Corn is actively traded towards Ukrainian ports in the range of 155-160$ DAP. On the western border of Ukraine, customer activity is resumed with price levels ranging from 125€ to 135€ DAP (delivered in Ukrainian cars 1520 mm). Trading activity in the direction of Europe remains not too high.

- Wheat remains in demand. In deep-sea ports of Ukraine there is a high liquidity of forage wheat with trading levels from 158$ to 162$ DAP depending on the delivery period. The premium on food wheat remains 15-20$. In the direction of the western border trading levels on feed wheat in the range of 128-132€ DAP.
Recent customer indicators:

- The long-term procedure for obtaining export licenses directs sellers to sell sunflower on the domestic market. Prices of sunflower with delivery to the plant in Ukraine were traded within 310-330$ (equiv. without VAT), depending on the oil content and delivery region. Demand for sunflower in the direction of Bulgaria at 420-430$ DAP, but liquidity is limited.
The offer of processed products (oil, cake and meal) is growing. The price of sunflower oil is kept in the range of 820-825$ DAP Bulgaria and 840-845$ DAP Greece.

- The demand of buyers in the main sales markets of Ukrainian soybeans is somewhat restrained. The price levels for the last week decreased by 5-10€. In the direction of the western border demand at 380-390€ DAP per GMO, the premium for NE-GMO quality is up to 10€. In the deep sea ports of Ukraine, the demand for soybeans GMOs is in the range of 450-460$ DAP.


Jan 05 - Saskatchewan workers at grain handler Viterra set to strike
More than 400 Canadian workers at grain handler Viterra are set to strike on Friday in Saskatchewan, pending a last round of talks, the Grain and General Services Union said. Viterra, based in Rotterdam, is one of Canada's largest handlers of wheat, canola and other crops. Saskatchewan is the country's biggest grain-growing province.

Jan 05 - Jordan's MIT locks up 120k mt wheat for March at $276.75/mt (AgriCensus)

Jordan’s state grain importer has booked 120,000 mt of milling wheat for March shipment, trade sources said Thursday.

The Ministry of Industry, Trade and Supply (MIT) booked two cargoes of milling wheat of 60,000 mt each, paying $276.75/mt CFR Aqaba to Al Dahra and CHS for the shipment in the first and second half of March.

In addition to the winning lot, five more offers were received in a price range of $287.50-301.50/mt CFR Aqaba.

Jordan's next wheat tender is expected to be announced on January 9, for March-May shipment.

The country's last wheat purchase was completed on November 21, when it booked 60,000 mt of milling wheat at $273.50/mt CFR Aqaba from Cerealcom Dolj for shipment in the second half of January.


Jan 04 - Polish farmers to resume blockade of Ukraine border crossing
Polish farmers will resume their blockade of the Medyka border crossing with Ukraine from Thursday, protest leaders told state-run news agency PAP, as Prime Minister Donald Tusk attempted to defuse the dispute. The Polish farmers suspended their protest, which aims to secure government subsidies for corn and prevent tax hikes, on Dec. 24. Polish truck drivers have been blocking border crossings with Ukraine since November.

Jan 04 - Bunge says damaged natgas pipeline caused Indiana soy plant closure
A soybean processing facility in Decatur, Indiana, operated by global grain handler Bunge stopped operations last week following damage to a natural gas pipeline that feeds the site, the company said in a statement to Reuters on Wednesday. Bunge said it expected the Decatur plant to be operational "soon."


Jan 03 - StoneX scraps forecast for record Brazilian soybean crop
Agribusiness consultancy StoneX on Tuesday cut its estimate for Brazil's soybean crop in 2023/24 due to lack of rain in key farmlands, now forecasting 152.8 million metric ton harvest, down from its previous estimate of 161.9 million tons. The cut means StoneX no longer forecasts a record crop in Brazil, the world's largest producer and exporter of soybeans, as output this season would come in below the 157.7 million tons reaped in 2022/23.

Jan 03 - Funds possibly in position to cover big CBOT corn shorts a la 2018 - Braun
Speculators have entered 2024 with some of their most bearish-ever views toward Chicago-traded corn, though in years past, that positioning has rarely proven sustainable in the months that followed. As of Dec. 26, money managers held a net short position in CBOT corn futures and options of 177,626 contracts, their second-largest year-end net short on record after 2017.

 

Jan 02 - EU wheat prices drop in 2023 as Black Sea trade withstands war
Euronext wheat edged up on Friday but fell sharply over the year after stiff export competition from the Black Sea region eased worries about war disrupting the grain trade. March wheat on Paris-based Euronext settled 0.3% higher on the day at 222.50 euros ($246.15) a metric ton.

Jan 02 - USDA November soy crush estimated at 199.7 million bushels
The U.S. soybean crush likely eased slightly to 5.991 million short tons in November, or 199.7 million bushels, while soyoil stocks rose, according to analysts surveyed by Reuters ahead of a monthly U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) report. The U.S. crush topped 200 million bushels in October for the first time ever as a recently expanded and still-growing U.S. soy processing industry crushed greater volumes of soybeans amid rising vegetable oil demand from biofuel makers.