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Global Ag News for Jan 4.24


US Agriculture Sentiment Weakens in December: Purdue Univ.

Ukraine Says More Demined Land Returned to Farmers Last Year

Additional Ukrainian land is again available for farming from the territories that were demined within 2023, economy minister Yulia Svyrydenko said in an online statement.

  • 208k hectares (over 800 square miles) have already been cleaned from explosives and provided to farmers, according to Svyrydenko
  • “With the average wheat yield we had this harvesting season, almost a million tons of grain can be grown on the returned areas,” she said


Wheat prices overnight are down 3 in SRW, down 4 in HRW, down 1/4 in HRS; Corn is down 1/2; Soybeans down 3; Soymeal unchanged; Soyoil down 0.19.

For the week so far wheat prices are down 31 in SRW, down 24 1/4 in HRW, down 15 1/4 in HRS; Corn is down 6 3/4; Soybeans down 23 3/4; Soymeal down $5.60; Soyoil up 0.25.

Chinese Ag futures (MAY 24) Soybeans down 10 yuan; Soymeal up 15; Soyoil down 16; Palm oil down 18; Corn down 2 — Malaysian Palm is up 35.

Malaysian palm oil prices overnight were up 35 ringgit (+0.97%) at 3656.

There were changes in registrations (-159 Oats, -121 Soybeans). Registration total: 1,295 SRW Wheat contracts; 0 Oats; 6 Corn; 795 Soybeans; 147 Soyoil; 0 Soymeal; 291 HRW Wheat.

Preliminary changes in futures Open Interest as of January 3 were: SRW Wheat up 6,638 contracts, HRW Wheat up 1,915, Corn up 11,857, Soybeans up 3,869, Soymeal down 1,408, Soyoil down 87.

Brazil: Widespread showers over the weekend for central Brazil should be overall helpful for filling soybeans. That same weather continues through this weekend and most of next week as well, especially from Mato Grosso to Minas Gerais. Southern areas will go drier until a system comes north from Argentina Sunday or Monday, followed by several waves of showers for mid-January. Recent drier weather in the south has been overall favorable for draining excessive moisture in the region, but a return to seasonable rainfall would be preferred for developing to filling crops.

Argentina: Frequent rainfall over the last several weeks has put much of the corn and soybean crop in a good place, with some of the long-season corn reaching reproduction with full soil moisture. Rainfall will be light this week, but still occurring for limited areas, especially south. Rainfall is forecast to increase this weekend and should come at a regular clip for next week with several disturbances moving through. Weather continues to favor both corn and soybeans.

Australia: Scattered showers continue across eastern areas this week. Western areas are much drier, a large concern for cotton and sorghum. A storm system may develop this weekend and bring widespread showers to southeastern areas that have not been nearly as wet as northeastern areas, helpful for cotton and sorghum there.

Northern Plains: Quiet conditions are likely for the rest of the week as systems miss off to the north and south, though some light snow may move through on Friday and Saturday. A strong system early next week will probably miss the region but one shortly behind it should send temperatures falling below normal for mid-January.

Central/Southern Plains: The storm track will set up over the region and bring a couple of storms through over the next couple of weeks. A very weak system went through Texas with some heavier rain Tuesday. A stronger storm system looks to bring a mix of rain and snow to the region Thursday and Friday, and then an even larger system is forecast for early next week which may bring another blizzard through the region. Models are still working that out, but it should be another strong event with snow accumulation possibly into Texas. Another system that follows midweek will send temperatures plummeting for mid-January.

Midwest: A couple of systems may scrape through the region this week and weekend, with the most likely area to get significant precipitation in the far east on Saturday. Models are working that out, but appear to be favoring some snow accumulation. A storm system that goes through next week is forecast to be much more significant with impacts. Another storm that follows for late week will send temperatures plummeting across the region, especially in the west — a big flip from the near-record warm December.

Delta: This week will show some life as the El Nino storm track brings two systems through this week with scattered showers. A much larger storm is forecast for next week as well. Water levels on the Mississippi River have been very up and down over the last several weeks with storm systems improving conditions for a while followed by a period of lower flow, but the coming active weather should be more helpful.

The player sheet for Jan. 3 had funds: net sellers of 2,500 contracts of SRW wheat, buyers of 1,000 corn, sellers of 2,000 soybeans, buyers of 1,000 soymeal, and  buyers of 1,500 soyoil.


  • WHEAT TENDER: The Taiwan Flour Millers’ Association has issued an international tender to buy an estimated 82,975 metric tons of grade 1 milling wheat sourced from the United States, European traders said. The deadline for submission of price offers is Jan. 5.


  • WHEAT TENDER: A group of South Korean flour mills has issued an international tender to buy an estimated 50,000 metric tons of milling wheat sourced from the United States
  • RICE TENDER: Egypt’s state grains buyer, the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC), set a tender to import natural white wholly milled short-grain Indian rice, it said in a statement. GASC, on behalf of Egypt’s Holding Company for Food Industries, sought arrival of the rice from Feb. 1-19 and/or Feb. 20-March 10. The deadline for offers was Dec. 21 and they should be accompanied by three samples, of two kilograms each, GASC said.
  • SOYMEAL TENDER: Iranian state-owned animal feed importer SLAL issued an international tender to purchase up to 200,000 metric tons of soymeal.
  • WHEAT TENDER: Jordan’s state grains buyer issued an international tender to buy up to 120,000 metric tons of milling wheat sourced from optional origins.

Map of Eastern Europe


ETHANOL: US Weekly Production Survey Before EIA Report

Output and stockpile projections for the week ending Dec. 29 are based on eight analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

  • Production seen lower than last week at 1.075m b/d
  • Stockpile avg est. 23.802m bbl vs 23.517m a week ago

Bunge Shuts Indiana Soy Plant Due to Damaged Gas Pipeline

Crop trader Bunge shut a soybean crushing facility in Decatur, Indiana, due to an issue with a natural gas pipeline.

  • The issue started last week and affected the plant’s capacity to produce soy meal and other soybean byproducts
  • Bunge said the facility stopped working last week due to a damaged natural gas pipeline that feeds the plant
  • “We are protectively working with all the appropriate parties to repair the pipeline,” according to an emailed statement from Bunge
  • The company expects the facility to resume operations “soon”

India’s wheat output may touch new record of 114 million tonnes in 2023-24

India’s wheat output may touch new record of 114 million tonnes in 2023-24 (Eds: Adding details)

New Delhi, Jan 3 (PTI) Wheat production is expected to touch a new record of 114 million tonnes in the ongoing 2023-24 crop year on higher coverage and provided weather conditions remain normal, a top food ministry official said on Wednesday.

The last leg of sowing of wheat, the main rabi (winter) crop, is underway and will continue till next week. Till last week, wheat was planted in 320.54 lakh hectares, as per the official data.

Wheat production stood at a record 110.55 million tonnes in the 2022-23 crop year (July-June), compared to 107.7 million tonnes achieved in the previous year.

“We expect that total area under cultivation of wheat will increase this year and God willingly if the climate is alright, the production will be 114 million tonne that’s what the agriculture ministry has indicated informally to us,” Food Corporation of India (FCI) Chairman and Managing Director Ashok K Meena told reporters.

Area sown to wheat crop is also showing an increase compared to the last year. There was a deficit of one per cent in some states but that will also be made up in the first week of January, he said.

“If that is the level of production, we are very confident that we will be able to procure more than our requirement and also additional stocks needed for the Open Market Sale Scheme (OMSS) for next year,” he noted.

When asked if the central nodal agency plans to step up procurement considering the opening wheat balance of 76 lakh tonnes to be on April 1, which is just enough to meet the buffer requirement, the FCI chief said: “We will try our best to provide minimum support price (MSP) to all farmers. Because of the open market sale, the indications are prices have stabilised and are not higher than it was last year.

“Since the wheat MSP is higher by 7 per cent than the last year, we hope that lot of farmers will be willing to give their produce to the FCI,” Meena said.

Last year, the FCI’s wheat procurement stood at 26.2 million tonnes, higher than the annual buffer requirement of 18.4 million tonnes.

This year’s wheat crop will be ready for harvest from April onwards.

FCI is the central nodal agency that buys rice and wheat to ensure MSP to the farmers and distributes the grains for free to 81 crore poor via ration shops. It also uses surplus grain via OMSS to boost domestic availability and check prices.

Curbing wheat & rice inflation through OMSS:

According to FCI, 5.9 million tonnes of wheat has been sold in the open market through weekly e-auction under the OMSS since June 2023, which has helped stabilise the retail prices.

“There has been hardly any increase in retail wheat prices on YoY basis,” the FCI Chairman said, adding that wheat OMSS will continue only till March 15.

However in the case of rice, there is “of course an uptick in prices visible in the open market but the mere fact that we are making huge quantity of rice available through OMSS, I hope that the prices will also not increase substantially”, he said.

There has been a lukewarm response for rice under OMSS and so far the FCI has been able to sell only 1.45 lakh tonnes at Rs 29 per kg through weekly auctions.

The FCI is using surplus foodgrain stock of 15.6 million tonnes for undertaking market intervention to stabilise the prices of two key commodities.

“Our OMSS intervention has helped stabilise prices of these two commodities. Rice and wheat being important part of CPI basket, we would hope that food related inflation will get controlled to the maximum possible,” he added.

Argentina Refiners to Hike Fuel Prices by 27%: La Nacion

Wednesday’s increase would be the second of President Javier Milei’s administration, La Nacion reports, citing refining executives it didn’t name.

  • NOTE: State-run YPF is Argentina’s biggest refiner/fuel retailer. The others are Raizen (which retails Shell), Pan American Energy (Axion) and Trafigura (Puma)
  • NOTE: While legislation to liberalize Argentine oil markets is debated in congress, the government plans to stop brokering talks between drillers and refiners, allowing them to set crude and gasoline prices as they wish

Indonesia 2023 palm oil domestic sales obligation at 3.26 mln metric tons -trade ministry

Indonesia recorded domestic sales obligation realisation of 3.26 million metric tons in 2023 which translated into 25.2 million tons in export permits, Trade Ministry official Syailendra said on Thursday.

Of the total permit issued, around 6.2 million tons of exports have not been realised, he added. Indonesia issued shipment permits to companies once they have sold a portion of their products to domestic market.

MGEX Spring Wheat Stocks Down 6.2% From Year Ago: Jan. 1

Stocks of hard spring wheat stored in Minnesota and Wisconsin warehouses fell y/y to 16.853m bushels in the week ending Jan. 1, according to the Minneapolis Grain Exchange’s weekly report.

  • Compared to the previous week, stockpiles fell by 864k bu
  • Stockpiles in Duluth/Superior warehouses down 830k bu from the previous week

China to speed up innovation, use of farm technology to hit higher productivity goals

China will use “all strengths” to accelerate the advancement and use of agricultural technology to secure higher productivity and a stable supply of crops, the agriculture ministry said on Thursday.

“It is necessary to intensify the application of research and development, leave no stone unturned to accelerate high-yield and high-oil soybeans, breakthrough in core technologies such as agricultural machinery in hilly and mountainous areas, and integrate and strengthen the application of technologies, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said in a statement.

The world’s top buyer of soy and corn has plans to push for higher grain and soybean yields across its existing farmland this year as it seeks to ensure food security for its population of 1.4 billion people.

China must put the innovation of agricultural and rural science and technology in a more prominent position and accelerate its use, the ministry said.

“We will use all strengths to build a powerful and effective scientific and technological innovation system… and accelerate the formation of new agricultural productivity,” the ministry said.

It will promptly establish a scientific and technological innovation strategic advisory committee to provide decision-making consultation on major agricultural technology strategies, plans and policies, it said.

China reported a record corn crop of 289 million metric tons in 2023 and bumper harvests of other grains largely due to an increase in planting acreage as authorities reclaimed land used for other crops for staple grains.

But Beijing continues to be concerned with food security, particularly amid rising tensions with trade partners, climate-related disasters and military conflicts.

Koch’s Iowa Deal Consolidates US Market as Urea Prices Soften

Global urea is under pressure as supplies build, though China has curbed exports through 2Q and India called another tender on Dec. 21. Koch’s $3.6 billion acquisition of OCI’s Wever, Iowa, nitrogen plant represents a 58% premium to CF’s Waggaman purchase price, reflecting higher prices for the upgraded fertilizers sold at Wever as the US nitrogen market consolidates.

Urea Mixed, Phosphates Strengthen

Tight supply pressured inland phosphate prices higher in the new year, while urea strengthened at New Orleans (NOLA) but dipped inland. Dry phosphates were up $10-$20 a short ton (st) at some inland terminals in the US, and a full C$35 a metric ton (mt) higher in Eastern Canada, though NOLA barges were flat. NOLA urea strengthened to $305-$312/st for January-February trades, up from the last confirmed $292-$308 range for December-January business. Despite the stronger NOLA values, inland urea remained under pressure, falling $5-$10/st at some Corn Belt locations and as much as $30-$40/mt in Eastern Canada. Potash pricing was flat, though a winter fill program is expected soon.


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