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China preparing for new records?

Китай се готви за нови рекорди?

According to global analysts, attacks on shipping in the Red Sea region have led to a sharp increase in the number of grain cargoes being diverted around the Cape of Good Hope instead of using the Suez Canal.

Against that backdrop, China's soybean imports from Brazil in 2023 jumped 29 percent from a year earlier, customs data showed, extending the South American producer's dominance in the world's largest soybean market and eating into U.S. market share.

But the country is also preparing for other records. With more planted area and heavier rainfall, China's corn production forecast for the new season rose 4.2 percent to 288.8 million tons, according to a report by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS). US agriculture.

The use of corn for feed is estimated at 223 million tons. Feed mills are likely to mix more corn into rations amid higher domestic supply, lower domestic prices and lower prices for imported corn, FAS said.

Demand for industrial use rose 1 million tonnes from the previous estimate, with corn ethanol profits rising. Cornstarch mills operated at an average capacity of 58% in the final quarter of 2023, up 7% from the third quarter.

"Food and industrial ethanol plants are expected to operate at a similarly high level and capacity in 2023-24 compared to the past two years," FAS forecast.

Maize imports are estimated at 20 million tons, down 3 million tons from the previous estimate. Farmers called for a freeze on grain imports to protect farm incomes as prices fell below cost.

Wheat production in 2023-24 was revised down to 136.6 million tonnes, down 0.8%, or 1.1 million tonnes, from last year due to apparent losses from rains that hit key areas, exactly before harvest. Wheat acreage increased by 0.5%, but yields fell by 1.3%, FAS said.

Wheat imports are estimated at 12.5 million tonnes, with China importing record volumes in the fourth quarter of 2023. Of this total, 7 million tonnes came from Australia, 2 million tonnes from Canada and 90,000 tonnes from the United States.

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