November 30, 2011
Japan up feed wheat imports to 189,000 tonnes
In the first seven months of the financial year (April-October), Japan imported 189,000 tonnes of animal feed wheat, customs-cleared trade data showed on Tuesday (Nov 29).
It was one of the fastest paces in the past decade.
Some users in Japan, the world's biggest corn buyer, have turned to less costly feed wheat as corn prices in Chicago touched a record of almost $8 a bushel in June, analysts said.
The government, which controls imports of wheat for food and animal feed to protect Japanese farmers, last month raised its planned buying of feed wheat for the year to next March to 430,000 tonnes.
The government's original plan announced in March was to buy 300,000 tonnes of feed wheat in 2011/12, compared with actual imports of 111,800 tonnes in 2010/11.
"We started holding import tenders every week from around the summer to meet increased demand for feed wheat," a farm ministry official said. Previously, the number of tenders varied from month to month.