Early estimate points to record 2021 global wheat output on EU rebound

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Global wheat production in 2021 is likely to increase and hit a new record of 780 million tonnes, according to FAO’s preliminary forecast, as expectations of a rebound in production in the European Union more than offset weather-impacted production prospects for output in the Russian Federation.

Maize production in South Africa is expected to reach near-record levels in 2021, while outputs in South America are forecast at well above-average levels. The crop is yet to be planted in countries north of the equator, the the FAO said in its latest Cereals Supply and Demand Brief.

The Brief offers more details and updated assessments. Highlights include a new and higher estimate for world cereal production in 2020, now seen at 2 761 million tonnes, a 1.9 percent increase from the previous year, lifted by higher-than-expected outturns reported for maize in West Africa, for rice in India, and wheat harvests in the European Union, Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation.

FAO’s new projections for 2020/21 include a 2.0 percent annual increase in global cereal utilisation to 2 766 million tonnes and 5.5 percent growth in world trade in cereals to 464 million tonnes.

Global cereal stocks are now forecast to end 2021 at 811 million tonnes, 0.9 percent below their opening levels, pushing down the stock-to-use ratio to 28.6 percent. World rice and wheat stocks are expected to increase, while those of coarse grains to decline, the FAO said.

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