August 11, 2008
World 2008 wheat, corn crop forecasts up

F.O. Licht raised its 2008-09 world crop forecasts for wheat and corn in its monthly report due to mostly favourable growing weather in the European Union, North America, Australian and parts of the Commonwealth of Independent States.

F.O. Licht now forecasts 2008-09 global corn output at 746.6 million tonnes, up 2.5 million from the July projection, but still down sharply from 770.4 million a year ago.

The Germany-based analysts said the revision was due to a slight recovery in US corn fields after they were hit by the worst flooding in 15 years in early June.

US corn output for 2008 was revised up by 2 million tonnes from last month's forecast to 289 million tonnes.

F.O. Licht now looks for world wheat output to tally 657.6 million tonnes in 2008-09, up 2.6 million tonnes from last month's projection and well above its 2007-08 estimate of 604.2 million.

The analysts made upward revisions for wheat production in the EU, Russian, the US, and Canada, which more than offset reductions for Ukraine, Argentina, Syria and mainly Iran.

F.O. Licht also raised its global barley crop forecast to 146.8 million tonnes, from the July projection of 145.1 million. This is up significantly from 134.2 million tonnes in 2007-08.

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