October 2, 2006


IGC notes feed users moving away from wheat



World wheat production, pegged at 588 million tonnes, has slid 30 million tonnes, or close to 5 percent from last year's estimated harvest, International Grains Council (IGC) said in its world estimate of wheat and corn production for the new marketing year.


The slide is largely due to lower wheat production in wheat-producing regions, the IGC said.


Because of lower production and the subsequent increase in prices, the group noted that European Union feed users are switching from wheat to lower priced barley and oilseed meals, which would cut wheat consumption.


The group also estimates greater wheat imports from Brazil and India.


For ending stocks, the group says world wheat ending stocks are at 116 million tonnes, down 19 percent from the previous marketing year.


For corn, the agency says the US crop may offset lower production in Europe and forecasts US corn output at 282 million tonnes in 2006-2007, which is an increase over last month's estimate of 278 million tonnes, and nearly unchanged from last year's production.


World corn production, pegged at 698 million tonnes, is 2 million tonnes over last month's estimate.


Total world grain production now stands at 1.572 billion tonnes, or about a quarter of a tonne for every human on this planet.