RICE: WORLD MARKETS AND TRADE
Peru Rice Shortage: Peru’s import demand is estimated to increase fivefold from 40,000 tons to 200,000 due to drought-affected production and insufficient domestic stocks. As the bulk of the crop is harvested June through July, the trade anticipates that imports could be needed as early as August. While Uruguay, Peru’s main supplier, will likely maintain its current level of exports, increased demand could potentially open the door to U.S. rice.
China Rice Import Update: In an effort to stem imports, China released about 1.0 million tons of japonica rice stocks in the northern province of Heilongjiang. This seems to have had the desired effect, as traders reported that some import contracts have been cancelled. Still, China’s imports are now estimated to reach 1.0 million tons. Additionally, its exports are expected to drop by an additional 300,000 tons to 1.2 million.
International: Asian prices remain strong in the wake of China’s entry into the market. In Thailand, 100B jumped to a 5-year high of $257 per ton, FOB, in mid-March. Prices have since declined $10 as China’s demand seemingly waned with the release of government stocks, ending the month at $247 per ton, FOB. In Vietnam, however, quotes continued to climb as tight exportable supplies, strong loadings, and insufficient inland freight seemingly eclipsed China’s market presence. Viet 5% is up $30 and currently quoted at $241 per ton, FOB. In India, 5% is up $5 to $270 as traders compete to secure supplies for export.
Domestic: U.S. #2/4 long grain milled rice is currently quoted at $412 per ton, FOB, flat month-to-month, maintaining a $165 per ton spread between U.S. and Thai rice. Price quotes for U.S. #1/4 medium grain milled rice from California are at $510 per ton, bulk, ex-spout Sacramento, also flat month-to-month.
TRADE CHANGES IN 2004
TRADE CHANGES IN 2003
· Argentina and Egypt changes are based on year-end statistics.
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