USDA reports biggest week on record for corn exports
The USDA says net corn export sales for the week ending January 28th were the largest on record, which extends back to 1990. The old crop total of nearly 7.5 million tons or more than 290 million bushels was driven by almost 6 million tons in sales to China, including the second and seventh largest single daily sales on record, as Beijing seeks to build-up feed inventories as it re-expands its swine industry. U.S. corn is significantly less expensive than China’s domestic supplies, even with freight costs. There were also more than 400,000 tons sold to unknown destinations, which could turn out to be China when it’s time for delivery. Soybean, soybean meal, wheat, and beef sales were up on the week, while sorghum, soybean oil, rice, cotton, and pork declined. The USDA’s next set of supply and demand estimates is out February 9th.
Physical shipments of sorghum and soybeans were above what’s needed to meet USDA projections for the current marketing year. The 2020/21 marketing year got underway June 1st for wheat, August 1st for cotton and rice, September 1st for beans, corn, and sorghum, and October 1st for soybean products.
Wheat came out at 643,100 tons (23.6 million bushels), up 69% from the week ending January 21st and a big rise from the four-week average. China purchased 134,000 tons and Nigeria bought 129,600 tons, while unknown destinations canceled on 31,000 tons. At this point in the 2020/21 marketing year, wheat sales are 823.6 million bushels, compared to 781.4 million in 2019/20. Sales of 93,500 tons (3.4 million bushels) for 2021/22 delivery were to Mexico (37,500 tons) and the Philippines (34,000 tons).
Corn was reported at 7,436,500 tons (292.8 million bushels), considerably larger than both the previous week and the four-week average. China picked up 5,860,400 tons and Japan purchased 502,900 tons. Nearing the end of the second quarter of the marketing year, corn sales are 2.209 billion bushels, compared to 897.2 million this time last year. Sales of 83,800 tons (3.3 million bushels) for 2021/22 delivery were to Japan.
Sorghum sales were 63,700 tons (2.5 million bushels), down 66% from the week before and 62% from the four-week average. China bought 199,500 tons and Mexico picked up 200 tons, but unknown destinations canceled on 136,000 tons. Sorghum exports are 229.2 million bushels, compared to 45.5 million a year ago. Sales of 53,000 tons (2.1 million bushels) for 2021/22 delivery were to unknown destinations.
Rice sales were 97,400 tons, 33% lower on the week, but 46% higher than the four-week average. Japan purchased 52,200 tons and Mexico bought 23,100 tons, while Honduras canceled on 4,500 tons. Rice exports are 2,213,100 tons, compared to 2,390,200 last year.
Soybeans were pegged at 824,000 tons (30.3 million bushels), 77% above the previous week and up 4% from the four-week average. China picked up 598,900 tons and Mexico purchased 121,400 tons, but unknown destinations canceled on 409,500 tons. So far, this marketing year, soybean sales are 2.155 billion bushels, compared to 1.185 billion a year ago. Sales of 633,400 tons (23.3 million bushels) for 2021/22 delivery were mainly to China (528,000 tons) and unknown destinations (57,500 tons).
Soybean meal came out at 301,100 tons, an increase from the week before and 12% higher than the four-week average. The Philippines bought 135,500 tons and Indonesia picked up 52,900 tons. For the marketing year to date, soybean meal sales are 7,199,300 tons, compared to 7,281,400 last year. Sales of 45,000 tons for 2021/22 delivery were to unknown destinations.
Soybean oil was reported at 10,500 tons, down 45% from the prior week and 51% from the four-week average. Colombia purchased 7,300 tons and Guatemala bought 5,000 tons, but unknown destinations canceled on 15,000 tons. Cumulative soybean oil sales are 584,100 tons, compared to 602,300 a year ago.
Upland cotton was pegged at 286,700 bales, a decrease of 11% on the week, but an increase of 5% from the four-week average. China picked up 85,400 bales and Turkey purchased 71,400 bales. 2020/21 upland cotton exports are 12,766,000 bales, compared to 12,846,600 last year. Net sales of 3,800 bales for 2021/22 delivery were to Thailand (9,200 bales) and Indonesia (7,400 bales) with cancellations by China (10,600 bales) and Mexico (2,200 bales).
Net beef sales totaled 29,800 tons. The reported buyers were South Korea (10,000 tons), China (7,000 tons), Japan (7,000 tons), Taiwan (1,900 tons), and Canada (1,000 tons). Shipments of 17,600 tons were primarily to Japan (5,600 tons), South Korea (4,900 tons), Mexico (1,800 tons), China (1,200 tons), and Canada (1,000 tons). Sales of 100 tons for 2022 delivery were to Canada.
Net pork sales totaled 46,300 tons. The listed purchasers were China (17,900 tons), Mexico (10,300 tons), Japan (4,000 tons), Canada (2,900 tons), and the Philippines (2,600 tons), with a cancellation by El Salvador (100 tons). Shipments of 38,300 tons were mostly to China (12,000 tons), Mexico (10,800 tons), Japan (4,600 tons), South Korea (2,700 tons), and Canada (1,800 tons).