Dramatic Drop in India's Soybean Meal Exports

India's soybean meal exports are sharply lower this year, owing to smaller crush, rising domestic use, and high prices relative to competitors. With October through February trade at less than 900,000 tons, the annual estimate is on track to fall to its lowest level in more than a decade.

India has been an important supplier of meal to Southeast Asia where demand for protein meal continues to grow. But as India's exports have dwindled, trade partners have adjusted. Those importers with little crush capacity have turned to alternative suppliers of meal, primarily South America, but also China and the United States. In contrast, others such as Bangladesh and Vietnam, are increasingly relying on domestic crush of imported soybeans to meet growing demand.

OVERVIEW

Global soybean production is unchanged. Soybean trade is up, with increased imports by Russia and Turkey, where crush is also raised. In contrast, lower Indian crush results in a steep decline in soybean meal exports. U.S. production and trade are unchanged this month. The season-average farm price remains the same.

SOYBEAN PRICES

U.S. export bids, FOB Gulf, in February averaged $401 per ton, unchanged from last month.

As of the week ending February 26, 2014/15 U.S. soybean commitments (outstanding sales plus accumulated exports) to China totaled 29.7 million tons compared to 27.8 million a year ago. Total commitments to the world are 47.6 million tons, compared to 44.2 million for the same period last year.

2014/15 TRADE OUTLOOK

  • Australia rapeseed exports are raised 100,000 tons to 2.4 million on larger exportable supplies.
  • Bangladesh soybean imports are up 100,000 tons to 650,000 due to growing domestic crush.
  • Brazil soybean imports are cut 250,000 tons to 300,000 as a large crop and declining Real reduces the financial incentives to import soybeans from Paraguay.
  • China
    • Soybean exports are lowered 100,000 tons to 250,000 on smaller shipments to date, primarily to South Korea.
    • Rapeseed imports are increased 100,000 tons to 3.85 million while rapeseed oil imports are decreased 300,000 tons to 1.0 million owing to greater reliance on crushing rapeseed domestically.
    • Palm oil imports are cut 200,000 tons to 6.1 million reflecting the pace of trade to date.
  • India
    • Soybean exports are raised 100,000 tons to 250,000 on growing trade to niche markets in the United States and Canada.
    • Soybean meal exports are slashed 600,000 tons to 1.7 million due to exceptionally small shipments in the first part of the year.
    • Sunflowerseed oil imports are up 100,000 tons to 1.55 million on strong deliveries during the first part of the year.
  • Indonesia palm kernel meal exports are increased 150,000 tons to 4.0 million on higher production and growing demand, mainly in Oceania and Southeast Asia.
  • Iran soybean imports are down 100,000 tons to 250,000 on slower trade to date.
  • Japan soybean meal imports are trimmed 100,000 tons to 2.0 million on a more moderate protein growth rate.
  • South Korea copra meal imports are decreased 100,000 tons to 400,000 on trade trends.
  • Malaysia palm oil exports are cut 300,000 tons to 17.7 million as a result of reduced exports during first part of the year.
  • Mexico soybean imports are boosted 100,000 tons to 4.1 million on growing demand for crush.
  • New Zealand palm kernel meal imports are raised 100,000 tons to 2.2 million on growing demand for protein meal.
  • Paraguay soybean exports are increased 280,000 tons to 4.8 million on trade trends.
  • Philippines soybean meal imports are cut 200,000 tons to 2.5 million on slow pace of shipments.
  • Russia soybean imports are up 400,000 tons to 1.5 million on growing protein meal demand.
  • South Africa soybean imports jump 110,000 tons to 130,000 on trade trends.
  • Turkey soybean imports are raised 200,000 tons to 1.8 million while soybean meal imports are lowered 260,000 tons to 740,000 due to increasing domestic crush and meal production.
  • Venezuela soybean meal imports are decreased 100,000 tons to 1.1 million on trade trends.
  • Vietnam soybean imports are cut 100,000 tons to 1.5 million due to slow shipments to date.