Report Highlights:

On November 13, 2015, Statistics Korea (KOSTAT) released its revised 2015 rice production estimate of 4.33 million metric tons. This represents a 2.0 percent increase above last year's crop, supported by a record average yield despite a decline in rice acreage, resulting in a 36-percent stocks- to-use ratio in MY 2015/16, the highest in several years.

General Information:

Production

On November 13, 2015, Statistics Korea (KOSTAT) released its revised 2015 rice production estimate of 4,326,915 metric tons, representing a 1.6 percent increase from the recent update of PSD (KS1538) due to continued favorable weather conditions through harvest completion. Since the initial crop survey of early September, the new figure is an increase of 2.0 percent above last year's crop despite a decline in rice acreage. The PSD has been revised accordingly.

Yield

Favorable weather increased rice yields to a record 5,416 Kg per hectare, up 4.2 percent from the previous year.

Korea: Rice Area, Yield and Production

Crop Year

Area (1,00HA)

Yield (KG/HA)

Production (Milled, 1,000 MT)

2005

980

4,900

4,768

2006

955

4,890

4,680

2007

950

4,640

4,408

2008

936

5,180

4,843

2009

924

5,318

4,916

2010

892

4,820

4,295

2011

854

4,946

4,224

2012

849

4,718

4,006

2013

833

5,081

4,230

2014

816

5,200

4,241

2015

799

5,416

4,327

Korea: 2015 Rice Area, Yield and Production

Type of Rice Land

Area

Yield (KG/HA)

Production (Milled, MT)

Paddy Rice

797,957

5,418

4,323,078

Upland Rice

1,387

2,766

3,837

Total

799,344

5,416

4,326,915

Stocks:

MY 2015/16 ending stocks (through the end of October 2016) are forecast to increase to 1.6 million tons, or 36 percent of anticipated consumption, as rice production in the past three years was greater than demand as a result of a continued decline in per capita consumption. MY 2014/15 stocks (at the end of October 2015) are estimated at about 1.1 million tons, or 26 percent of total domestic consumption.

Korea: Status of Rice Stocks

(Milled rice, 1,000 MT, as of end October)

Rice Year (Nov.-Oct.)

2010/11

2011/12

2012/13a/

2013/14b/

2014/15c/

2015/16c/

Total

1,034

730

755

899

1,140

1,580

Government Stock

984

730

755

899

1,140

1,580

-Domestic Rice

696

487

na

na

na

na

-Imported Rice

288

243

na

na

na

na

Civil Stock

50

0

0

0

0

0

Source: FAS/Seoul Estimate based on MAFRA data

a/ MAFRA Preliminary

b/ FAS/Seoul Preliminary

c/ FAS/Seoul forecast

Rice PS&D

Rice, Milled

2013/2014

2014/2015

2015/2016

Market Begin Year

Nov 2013

Nov 2014

Nov 2015

Korea, Republic of

USDA Official

New Post

USDA Official

New Post

USDA Official

New Post

Area Harvested

833

833

816

816

799

799

Beginning Stocks

780

780

899

899

1158

1140

Milled Production

4230

4230

4241

4241

4258

4327

Rough Production

5632

5632

5638

5638

5661

5771

Milling Rate (.9999)

7511

7511

7522

7522

7522

7498

MY Imports

313

313

470

450

410

470

TY Imports

379

349

450

370

410

410

TY Imp. from U.S.

38

38

0

140

0

140

Total Supply

5323

5323

5610

5590

5826

5937

MY Exports

2

2

2

2

2

2

TY Exports

2

2

2

2

2

2

Consumption and Residual

4422

4422

4450

4448

4360

4355

Ending Stocks

899

899

1158

1140

1464

1580

Total Distribution

5323

5323

5610

5590

5826

5937

(1000 HA) ,(1000 MT)

Applicable Milling Rate from Brown Rice to Milled Rice:

Based on the outcome of an industry survey in November 2011, the Ministry of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs (MAFRA) acknowledged that the current average milling rate (paddy to milled) was too high and considered lowering it from 74 percent to 72 percent to reflect current production practices. Local processors reportedly polished rice to a greater degree in response to consumer demand for well-milled high quality rice. As shown in the table below, milling is said to have climbed from 9 to 12 degrees. The higher you progress in the 12 degree spectrum, the whiter the rice. The shelling rate to brown rice from paddy rice remains unchanged at 80 percent.

Korea: Milling Rate to Milled Rice from Paddy Rice

(Percent)

Degree(s)

1

2

5

7

9 a/

10

12 b/

% of Brown Rice Removed

0.8

1.6

4.0

5.6

7.2

8.0

9.6

% of Milled Rice Remaining

99.2

98.4

96.0

94.4

92.9

92.0

90.4

% of Shelling Rate

80

80

80

80

80

80

80

% of Milling Rate

79.36

78.72

76.80

75.52

74.32

73.60

72.32

Source: Statistics Korea (KOSTAT)

a/ milling rate applicable to date

b/ milling rate to be revised in the future

The Korean government released rice production statistics that show a comparison of milled rice production based on milling rates of 9 degrees and 12 degrees as below. The change in milling rates will result in a production decrease on average of about 2-3 percent. However, as MAFRA maintains its official data series based on 9 degrees, PSD milling rate figures align accordingly.

Korea: Rice Production Comparison per Milling Rate

(1,000 MT, .9999)

Crop Year

Area (1,000 HA)

Rough Rice

Based on 9 Degrees

Based on 12 Degrees

Milled Rice

Milling Rate

Milled Rice

Milling Rate

1995

1,056

6,389

4,694

7,347

4,568

7,150

1996

1,050

7,123

5,323

7,473

5,179

7,271

1997

1,052

7,315

5,449

7,449

5,302

7,248

1998

1,059

6,790

5,097

7,507

4,959

7,303

1999

1,066

7,066

5,263

7,448

5,121

7,247

2000

1,072

7,197

5,291

7,352

5,148

7,153

2001

1,083

7,407

5,515

7,446

5,366

7,244

2002

1,053

6,687

4,927

7,368

4,794

7,169

2003

1,016

6,151

4,451

7,236

4,331

7,041

2004

1,001

6,737

5,000

7,422

4,865

7,221

2005

980

6,435

4,768

7,409

4,640

7,211

2006

955

6,305

4,680

7,423

4,554

7,223

2007

950

5,962

4,408

7,393

4,289

7,194

2008

936

6,468

4,843

7,488

4,712

7,285

2009

924

6,502

4,916

7,561

4,787

7,362

2010

892

5,811

4,295

7,391

4,180

7,193

2011

854

5,616

4,224

7,521

4,110

7,318

2012

849

5,405

4,006

7,412

3,898

7,212

2013

833

5,632

4,230

7,511

4,116

7,308

2014

816

5,638

4,241

7,522

4,126

7,318

2015

799

5,771

4,327

7,498

4,210

7,295