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Tight supplies in the global maize market - South Africa

Although the 2018/19 global maize harvest is expected to increase by 3 percent from the previous season to 1.07 billion tonnes, the global supplies will remain tight.

This is due to an anticipated uptick of maize usage in industrial, animal feed industries. The industrial (mainly ethanol) and feed industries maize usages are set to increase by 3 percent and 4 percent from the 2017/18 season to 305 million and 645 million tonnes, respectively.

The uptick in demand from the animal feed industry is partly on the back of lower global wheat production resulting to feed processors switching to maize as a substitute. As a consequence of this, the 2018/19 global maize stocks are set to decline by 12 percent from the previous season to 261 million tonnes.

The wet weather conditions experienced last week in the US had a minimal impact on maize harvest activity, as well as crop conditions last week. The most recent data from the USDA shows that 39 percent of the US maize crop had already been harvest on 14 October 2018, which is 12 percent ahead of the corresponding period last year. In addition, this 4 percentage points ahead of the average five-year pace.

Also worth noting is that this 68 percent of the US maize crop was rated good or excellent on 14 October 2018, which is unchanged from the last week, but 3 percentage points better than the corresponding period last year.

Back on home soil, the eastern and central parts of the country received a fair amount of rainfall in the past few days which has slightly improved soil moisture. The next two weeks could bring additional showers over the maize growing areas which should further increase soil moisture and benefit the planting process. AGBIZ


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