U.S. corn exports are forecast up 3.0 million tons to 73.0 million for 2020/21 (Oct-Sep) to reflect continued strong foreign demand and limited supplies in Ukraine and Brazil, the USDA said in its latest monthly report.
“If realized, the volume would be the largest in history. The previous record was 63.7 million tons in 2017/18,” it said.
For the first half of the current trade year, the export pace was well ahead of previous levels with large volumes to China and many other destinations. The pace of U.S. corn inspections for exports is still brisk according to export inspections data for May, totalling nearly 8.2 million tons, of which roughly 40 percent is destined to China.
For Ukraine, its exports to China have more than doubled from a year ago despite smaller available supplies. This has left countries in North Africa, Middle East, and Asia to look to the United States for corn.
For Brazil, exports are lowered this month reflecting persistent dry conditions in several states where the second-crop corn is produced. The second-crop corn, particularly in the Center-West, is primarily destined for overseas markets, while the first-crop corn is used in the domestic market. U.S. corn exports are expected to be robust for the remainder of the year with large sales on the books.
Unfavorable crop prospects in Brazil could be supportive of U.S. exports into early 2021/22 (Oct-Sep). However, with the current forecast of larger exports for Argentina, Brazil, and Ukraine, U.S. exports are projected to decline for 2021/22. Still, this would be the third-largest exports on record, the USDA said.
The global corn market is supplied primarily by four countries – Argentina, Brazil, Ukraine, and the United States. Combined, these countries account for nearly 90 percent of global exports.