March 19, 2012


Italy's 2011 corn, soft wheat imports up



Italian cereals body Anacer said on Friday (Mar 16) that Italy's 2011 corn imports surged 25.3% on year while imports of soft wheat rose 4.6%.


Italy's corn imports jumped to 2,604,464 tonnes last year from 2,078,067 tonnes in 2010, while soft wheat imports rose to 5,039,884 tonnes last year from 4,816,234 tonnes in 2010, Anacer said in a statement without explaining the data.


Italian feed makers increased purchases of imported corn to meet rising feed demand, which local output could not cover, a senior official at Italian feed makers association Assalzoo has said.


Italy buys corn abroad to cover 25-30% of its demand, with almost all of its corn imports used to make animal feed and most of the inflows coming from Hungary and Romania, according to Assalzoo.


Imports of durum wheat used for making pasta fell 14.6% to 2,217,395 tonnes in 2011, while barley imports rose to 909,280 tonnes from 851,665 tonnes, Anacer said. Anacer did not provide details of grain import origins.


Total imports of cereals and oilseeds to Italy rose 1.7% to 17,417,713 tonnes worth EUR5.1 billion (US$6.67 billion), it said. Exports of rice from Italy, Europe's biggest producer, dropped 10.1% to 726,749 tonnes last year, it said.


Italy's exports of pasta rose 3.4% to 1,659,536 tonnes while exports of cereals-based animal feed rose 6% to 224,444 tonnes.

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