U.S.D.A. raises forecasts for soy product exports

by Jay Sjerven
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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture in its December World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report issued on Dec. 11 raised its forecasts for U.S. exports of soybean oil and soybean meal in 2012-13, although the projected outgoes for both products fell well short of record levels. The U.S.D.A.’s forecast for soybean exports in the current year was unchanged from November and also well below the record.

The U.S.D.A. forecast U.S. soybean oil exports in 2012-13 (Oct. 1-Sept. 30) at 1,800 million lbs, up 600 million lbs, or 50%, from the September projection at 1,200 million lbs and up 336 million lbs, or 23%, from 1,464 million lbs in 2011-12. The U.S.D.A. in its Oil Crops Outlook issued on Dec. 12 said, “In November, unusually large export sales of soybean oil have suddenly boosted U.S. trade prospects for that commodity. Importers in China were particularly active buyers this fall in the U.S. soybean oil market. Shipments to China for October-November already totaled 243 million lbs, more than for all of last year.”

The soybean oil export forecast for the current year compared with the recent five-year average exports number at 2,632 million lbs and the record outgo of 3,359 million lbs in 2009-10.

The U.S.D.A. forecast U.S. soybean meal exports in 2012-13 at 8,200,000 tons, up 300,000 tonnes, or 4%, from the September projection but down 1,541,000 tons, or 16%, from 9,741,000 tons in 2011-12. In its Oils Crops Outlook commentary, the U.S.D.A. attributed lower U.S. prices of soybean meal for the increase in its export forecast.

“These lower costs for soybean meal have stimulated more export sales this fall, particularly for the Philippines, the European Union-27 and Turkey,” The U.S.D.A. said. The forecast soybean meal outgo compared with the recent five-year average exports at 9,549,000 tons and record exports of 11,159,000 tons in 2009-10.

The U.S.D.A. forecast U.S. soybean exports in 2012-13 at 1,345 million bus, unchanged from the November projection but down 17 million bus from 2011-12. The recent five-year average soybean outgo was 1,360 million bus, and record U.S. soybean exports were achieved in 2010-11 at 1,501 million bus.
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