“Transportation restrictions could also hamper the distribution of farm inputs and disrupt spring fieldwork. However, at this stage, the Council assumes that planting intentions will be fulfilled.
“Nevertheless, the Council's projections for supply and demand are tentative until the progress and duration of the pandemic become clearer,” it cautioned.
Its forecast for world total grains - wheat and coarse grains - production in 2019/20 is lifted by 3m tons month-on-month m/m to 2,175m, mainly because of an adjustment for maize output in the EU.
With consumption trimmed, the figure for total grains stocks is up by 4m tons, but inventories are still seen contracting, by 17m year-on-year (y/y) to a four-season low.
Its 2019/20 world soybean production forecast is cut by 4m tons to 341m, a 5% y/y fall, reflecting downgrades for Brazil and Argentina.
Assuming a rebound in US acreage, world output in 2020/21 is predicted to expand by 7% y/y. While stocks may edge up, they are likely to remain tight on low carry-ins and an uptick in demand. Trade is tentatively projected to reach a peak of 157m tons, a 3% y/y increase.
In its first full set of supply and demand projections for 2020/21, the Council also said it sees total grains production reaching a new peak of 2,223m tons, some 2% higher year on year (y/y).
“Because of tighter carry-in stocks, total world grains supply - production plus opening stocks - is placed 1% larger y/y, and with assumed growth in demand, a further small drop in carryover inventories is envisaged. Trade is expected to be a new high, including increased shipments of wheat, maize and sorghum.”