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Beef, wheat export sales fall to marketing year lows

The USDA says wheat and beef export sales have notched marketing year lows for a second consecutive week. Both of those commodities are seeing hefty competition on the global market from other exporters due to relatively high U.S. prices and the strength of the dollar against other currencies. Soybeans, soybean meal, pork, rice, sorghum, and cotton sales for the week ending March 14th all saw week-to-week improvements, while corn fell below the previous week, but still held above the four-week average. The USDA’s next set of supply and demand estimates is out April 11th.

Physical shipments of corn and soybeans were more than what’s needed to meet USDA projections for the current marketing year. The 2023/24 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. The marketing year for beef and pork is the calendar year.

Wheat had a net reduction of 109,600 tons (-4 million bushels). Japan purchased 62,200 tons and Mexico bought 50,100 tons, but there were a handful of cancelations, led by China at 262,700 tons. In the final quarter of the 2023/24 marketing year, wheat exports are 675.8 million bushels, compared to 656.4 million in 2022/23. Sales of 285,900 tons (10.5 million bushels) for 2024/25 delivery were mainly to the Philippines (94,000 tons) and South Korea (65,000 tons).

Corn was reported at 1,185,800 tons (46.7 million bushels), 8% less than the week ending March 7th, but 10% more than the four-week average. Japan picked up 545,600 tons and Mexico purchased 246,000 tons, while unknown destinations canceled on 132,300 tons. At this stage of the marketing year, corn exports are 1.642 billion bushels, compared to 1.375 million this time last year.

Sorghum sales of 9,800 tons (400,000 bushels), 71% higher than the previous week, but 93% lower than the four-week average. Japan bought 10,000 tons, while China canceled on 200 tons. Sorghum exports are 194.7 million bushels, compared to 59 million a year ago.

Rice sales were 142,100 tons, a solid increase from both the week before and the four-week average. Colombia picked up 44,000 tons and Mexico purchased 31,100 tons. Rice exports are 2,697,700 tons, compared to 1,568,400 last year.

Soybeans were pegged at 494,000 tons (18.2 million bushels), a jump of 31% from the prior week and 86% from the four-week average. China bought 304,400 tons and Mexico picked up 90,000 tons, while unknown destinations canceled on 47,200 tons. So far, this marketing year, soybean exports are 1.476 billion bushels, compared to 1.816 billion a year ago. Sales of 300 tons for 2024/25 delivery were to South Korea.

Soybean meal came out at 243,400 tons, up 16% on the week, but down 5% from the four-week average. Vietnam purchased 53,500 tons and unknown destinations bought 50,000 tons. Closing in on the halfway point of the marketing year for soybean products, soybean meal exports are 10,069,400 tons, compared to 8,386,500 last year. Sales of 42,300 tons for 2024/25 delivery were to Canada (41,800 tons) and Sri Lanka (500 tons).

Soybean oil was reported at 1,900 tons, a drop of 83% from the previous week and 80% from the four-week average, all to Mexico. Cumulative soybean oil exports are 74,500 tons, compared to 74,100 a year ago.

Upland cotton was pegged at 92,600 bales, a rise of 8% from the week before and 20% from the four-week average. Turkey picked up 23,800 bales and Peru purchased 13,700 bales. 2023/24 upland cotton exports are 10,707,900 bales, compared to 11,179,100 in 2022/23. Sales of 40,500 bales for 2024/25 delivery were primarily to Bangladesh (26,400 bales) and Turkey (8,800 bales).

Net beef sales totaled 11,000 tons, a decrease of 2% from the prior week and 12% from the four-week average. The reported buyers were South Korea (4,300 tons), China (2,100 tons), Japan (2,000 tons), Taiwan (700 tons), and Mexico (400 tons). Shipments of 14,400 tons were down 10% on the week and 9% from the four-week average, mostly to South Korea (3,900 tons), Japan (3,700 tons), China (2,700 tons), Mexico (1,500 tons), and Taiwan (900 tons).

Net pork sales totaled 33,800 tons, 36% larger than the previous week and 10% above the four-week average. The listed purchasers were Mexico (9,200 tons), Canada (8,900 tons), Japan (5,500 tons), South Korea (1,900 tons), and Vietnam (1,600 tons). Shipments of 32,100 tons were 7% smaller than the week before and 6% below the four-week average, mainly to Mexico (11,200 tons), South Korea (5,000 tons), Japan (4,700 tons), China (3,000 tons), and Canada (1,900 tons).

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