No changes to corn supply/demand in March crop report

By Susanne Retka Schill | March 09, 2012

No changes to the U.S. corn balance sheet from the previous month were made to the USDA’s monthly World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates report released Friday morning, although the projected farm-gate price range for corn and sorghum is narrowed. The projected ranges for the season-average farm prices are both narrowed 10 cents on each end to $5.90 to $6.50 per bushel and $5.80 to $6.40 per bushel, respectively.

The USDA’s monthly crop report put more emphasis on the global situation for coarse grains. Global coarse grain supplies for 2011-’12 are projected 1.6 million tons higher with production increases for Brazil corn and India corn and millet. Partly offsetting are reductions in sorghum output for India and Argentina and corn output for South Africa and Ecuador. Brazil corn production is raised 1 million tons on higher expected area for the second crop, which is planted following soybeans. India corn and millet production are raised 0.5 million tons and 1.5 million tons, respectively, in line with the latest government crop assessments. India sorghum production is lowered 0.7 million tons mostly reflecting lower expected area as the crop faces significant competition from cotton, soybeans, and pulses. Argentine sorghum production is lowered 0.2 million tons with lower expected yields. South Africa corn production is lowered 0.5 million tons as higher reported area is more than offset by reduced yield prospects. Below-normal rainfall and above-normal temperatures throughout South Africa’s maize triangle adversely affected pollination and early grain fill during February. Corn production for Ecuador is lowered 0.3 million tons as excess rains lower area and yields.

Global coarse grain trade for 2011-’12 is raised with increases for corn and barley. Corn imports are raised for EU-27, Ecuador, and Peru, but lowered for Malaysia. Corn exports are raised for Brazil and India. Barley imports are raised for Iran and China. Barley exports are raised for Australia. Lower sorghum exports for Argentina are offset by higher expected shipments from Australia.

Global coarse grain consumption for 2011-’12 is raised 2.2 million tons mostly on higher corn feeding in EU-27 and India, and higher millet use in India. EU-27 corn feeding is raised 1.0 million tons as corn is expected to replace higher priced wheat in animal rations. India corn and millet feeding are raised a combined 1.0 million tons. Millet food use is also raised 0.6 million tons for India. Partly offsetting these increases are reductions in sorghum food use in India, barley feeding in Australia, and corn feeding in Malaysia. Global coarse grain ending stocks for 2011-’12 are lowered slightly, with 0.8-million-ton reduction in projected world corn stocks.