June 28, 2010


IGC sees bigger world wheat crop


The International Grains Council (IGC) has raised its estimate for the world wheat crop, despite the wet weather forcing Canadian farmers to abandon millions of acres.


IGC said farmers will harvest 664 million tonnes of wheat in 2010-11, adding four million tonnes to its previous forecast. This is in contrast to the forecast of the USDA, who earlier this month cut 3.7 million tonnes from its estimate for the world wheat crop, taking it to 668.5 million tonnes.


This estimate came before the Canadian Wheat Board astonished markets by forecasting that Canadian plantings of the grain would be the lowest in 39 years.


In contrast, Rabobank said that, because of Canada's plight and winterkill rates in the Black Sea states, the USDA estimate was some eight million tonnes too high.


The IGC acknowledged the threat to Canada's harvest posed by poor sowings, and cut the country's exports forecast by 1.5 million tonnes to 19.2 million tonnes, but said that prospects improved in the US, China, Australia and Iran.


Nonetheless, it left unchanged its estimate of world inventories at the end of 2010-11, citing the prospect of higher demand for wheat, and indeed other grains, by livestock farmers, notably in Asia. "Renewed strength in the global animal feed sector in response to rising meat consumption is expected to boost feed use of grains to a record," IGC said.