World continues to consume more rice than it produces; stocks lowest in 8 years

The USDA has lowered its estimates of global rice supplies in 2015/16, the third consecutive year that global consumption exceeds production leading to a drawdown in world ending stocks.

Global production is estimated to be 4.2 million tons lower at 469.3 million tons, down about 8.9 million tons from the preceding year, and the smallest crop since 2011/12, the USDA said in it latest report on world agriculture demand and supply estimates.

“Production forecasts are lowered for Australia, India, Madagascar, and the Philippines. The 2015/16 India crop is lowered 3.5 million tons to 100.0 million, the smallest crop since 2010/11. The reduction is due to a drop in expected Kharif rice production as early harvest reports indicate lower-than-expected yields across the northeastern rice growing region,” the USDA said.

Additionally, it said, the slow pace of plantings of the Rabi rice crop due mostly to dryness is expected to lower expected yields and production.

Rice production in Australia is lowered 254,000 tons as area is lowered 36,000 hectares to 30,000 hectares. This is the smallest area in production since 2008/09. Rice production in the Philippines is lowered 250,000 tons to 11.3 million due to cyclone damage. The rice crop in Madagascar is lowered 256,000 tons to 2.4 million because of lower yields.

Global rice consumption for 2015/16 is lowered 1.6 million tons to 484.6 million tons, still a record. Consumption forecasts are lowered in India, Madagascar, Nigeria, Thailand, and Vietnam. Global exports are unchanged at 41.3 million as India is lowered and mostly offset by increases for Thailand and Vietnam. Imports are lowered for Nigeria and the United States.

World 2015/16 ending stocks are lowered 2.6 million tons to 88.4 million, largely due to decreases for India, Nigeria, and Thailand. Stocks are down 15.3 million tons from the preceding year and the smallest since 2007/08. The 2015/16 stocks-to-use ratio is projected at 18.2 percent, down from 21.5 in 2014/15, and the smallest since 17.9 percent in 2006/07, the report said.

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