Grain and Feed Quarterly Update

An Expert's View about Agriculture and Animal Husbandry in South Africa

Posted on: 17 Nov 2012

Post forecasts a five percent increase in South Africa’s corn area for the 2012/13 MY to 3.3 million hectares.

THIS REPORT CONTAINS ASSESSMENTS OF COMMODITY AND TRADE ISSUES MADE BY USDA STAFF AND NOT NECESSARILY STATEMENTS OF OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT POLICY Required Report - public distribution Date: 10/29/2012 GAIN Report Number: South Africa - Republic of Grain and Feed Update Quarterly Update Approved By: Nicolas Rubio Prepared By: Dirk Esterhuizen Report Highlights: Post forecasts a five percent increase in South Africa’s corn area for the 2012/13 MY to 3.3 million hectares on higher domestic corn prices, which should yield a crop of about 12.7 million tons. This will place South Africa in a position to export approximately 2.4 million tons of corn, 30 percent or 600,000 tons more than the current marketing year’s expected exports of 1.8 million tons. Post: Pretoria Executive Summary: On a year-on-year basis, white corn and yellow corn prices in South Africa are, respectively, 10 percent and 14 percent higher as global corn stock are still tight due to the impact of the United States drought. As farmers usually reacts positively on higher prices, post forecasts a five percent increase in corn area for the 2012/13 MY [1] (2013/14 MY for South Africa). Post forecasts that commercial farmers will plant about 2.8 million hectares of corn and subsistence farmers 500,000 hectares. This will, based on a national average yields, result in a crop of about 12.7 million tons and 2.4 million tons of exports. The final estimate for the area planted and production of corn by commercial and subsistence farmers for the 2011/12 MY (the 2012/13 MY in South Africa) was recently released by the Crop Estimates Committee’s (CEC). According to the CEC, South Africa’s final estimated total corn crop for the 2011/12 MY was 12.1 million tons, 11 percent more than in the 2010/11 MY on a 10 percent increase in hectares planted. Commercial farmers planted 2.7 million hectares of corn, 13 percent more than in the 2010/11 MY, yielding a crop of 11.5 million tons and subsistence farmers planted about 442,114 hectares of corn, marginally less than the previous season, and produced 638,463 tons of corn. South Africa already exported 920,153 tons of corn in the first six months of the 2011/12 MY and post estimates that total exports could reach 1.8 million tons. US$1 = Rand 8.73 (10/25/2012) Sources: www.sagis.org.za www.grainsa.co.za www.safex.co.za www.daff.gov.za [1] The marketing years (MY) used in the text refer to the USDA marketing years in the PS&D table, and do not necessarily correspond with the marketing years used by the South African grain industry. Production White corn and yellow corn prices fell back slightly from their record levels in July, after good early summer rains were received in most of the corn producing areas of South Africa (see Figure 1 and Figure 2). The CEC also increased its final corn crop estimate in September for the 2011/12 MY by almost three percent or 300,000 tons, based on physical deliveries, which put downward pressure on prices. However, on a year-on-year basis, white corn and yellow corn prices are, respectively, 10 percent and 14 percent higher as global corn stock are still tight due to the impact of the United States drought. As farmers usually reacts positively on higher prices, post forecast a five percent increase in corn area for the 2012/13 MY (2013/14 MY for South Africa). Post forecasts that commercial farmers will plant about 2.8 million hectares of corn and subsistence farmers 500,000 hectares. This will, based on a national average yields, result in a crop of about 12.7 million tons, five percent more than the 2011/12 MY’s crop. This forecast is in line with the “intention to plant survey” that was published by the CEC on October 25, 2012. According to the CEC commercial farmers indicated that they will plant 2.7 million hectares of corn for the 2012/13 MY. The intention by commercial farmers is to plant 1.6 million hectares of white corn and 1.1 million hectares of yellow corn. Figure 1: The trend in the SAFEX price for white corn since January 2011 Figure 2: The trend in the SAFEX price for yellow corn since January 2011 The final estimate for the area planted and production of corn by commercial farmers for the 2011/12 MY (the 2012/13 MY in South Africa which runs from May 2012 to April 2013) was released by the CEC on September 26, 2012. According to the CEC, commercial farmers planted 2.7 million hectares of corn. This is 13 percent more than the corn hectares planted in the 2010/11 MY. The CEC estimates that subsistence farmers planted about 442,114 hectares of corn, marginally less than the previous season. Commercial farmers planted 1.6 million hectares with white corn, 15 percent more than the previous season, and 1.1 million hectares with yellow corn, 11 percent more than the previous season. Corn plantings were up in response to higher domestic corn prices during planting time compared to the previous season. The CEC’s final estimate for the 2011/12 MY’s commercial corn crop was 11.5 million tons. This is 11 percent more than the previous year’s crop of 10.4 million tons due to increased corn plantings. White corn production was estimated at 6.5 million tons, seven percent more than the previous season, while yellow corn production was estimated at 5.0 million tons, 16 percent more than the previous season. Furthermore, the CEC estimates that subsistence farmers produced 638,463 tons of corn for the 2011/12 MY, which brings South Africa’s final estimated corn crop for the 2011/12 MY at 12.1 million tons, 11 percent more than in the 2010/11 MY. The following table details area planted and production figures of white and yellow corn produced by commercial and subsistence farmers for the 2010/11 MY (actual), 2011/12 MY (estimate) and 2012/13 MY (forecast). Table 1: Area planted and production of commercial and subsistence corn in South Africa Area Yield Prod. Area Yield Prod. Area Yield Prod. 1,000ha t/ha 1,000 t 1,000ha t/ha 1,000 t 1,000ha t/ha 1,000 t MY 2010/11 2011/12 2012/13 Commercial corn White 1,418 4.3 6,052 1,637 4.0 6,506 1,700 4.2 7,150 Yellow 954 4.5 4,308 1,063 4.7 4,989 1,100 4.5 4,950 Sub Total 2,372 4.4 10,360 2,700 4.3 11,495 2,800 4.3 12,100 Subsistence corn White 347 1.1 396 302 1.4 429 350 1.1 400 Yellow 140 1.2 168 140 1.5 209 150 1.3 200 Sub Total 487 1.1 564 442 1.4 638 500 1.2 600 TOTAL 2,859 3.8 10,924 3,142 3.9 12,133 3,300 3.9 12,700 Source: SAGIS and CEC Consumption Post forecasts that the commercial demand for corn for human consumption and animal feed in the 2012/13 MY and 2011/12 MY will stay constant at 4.6 million tons and 4.4 million tons, respectively, due to prospects of slower economic growth and higher corn prices. This means total annual commercial corn demand is expected to stay at the same levels as in the 2010/11 MY, e.g. 9.6 million tons. Table 2 outlines the commercial consumption for white and yellow corn for the 2010/11 MY (actual), 2011/12 MY (estimate) and 2012/13 MY (forecast). Table 2: The commercial consumption of white and yellow corn in South Africa CORN White Yellow Total White Yellow Total White Yellow Total 1,000 t MY 2010/11 2011/12 2012/13 Human 4,119 393 4,512 4,200 400 4,600 4,200 400 4,600 Animal 1,202 3,160 4,362 380 3,980 4,360 400 4,000 4,400 Other 225 468 693 150 450 600 150 450 600 TOTAL 5,546 4,021 9,567 4,730 4,830 9,560 4,750 4,850 9,600 Source: SAGIS; Grain SA Note: Please note that consumption figures in the PS&D table also include corn utilized by the subsistence farming sectors and provision for commercial on farm usages. Trade With an estimated commercial corn crop of 12.1 million tons, post forecasts that South Africa will be able to export about 2.4 million tons of corn in the 2012/13 MY. South Africa already exported 920,153 tons of corn in the first six months of the 2011/12 MY of which 832,416 tons were white corn and 87,737 tons yellow corn. Mexico continues to be a major market for South African white corn and 649,433 tons (70 percent of total exports) of corn has been exported to Mexico (see also Table 3). The rest of the corn was exported to South Africa’s neighboring countries e.g. Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Swaziland and Namibia. Post estimate that South Africa will export about 1.8 million tons of corn in the 2011/12 MY. This is 300,000 tons more than post’s July estimate and is based on an increase in the final corn crop estimate, the current rate of exports and a decline in projected corn exports by the United States that is creating new export market opportunities for other corn producing countries. For the 2010/11 MY, South Africa exported 2.4 million tons of corn which included 1.7 million tons of white corn and 711,816 tons of yellow corn. Almost half of the exports went to Mexico. South Africa also imported 288,304 tons of yellow corn from Romania and Ukraine, which was mostly used at the coastal regions of the country. A small amount of white corn (133,771 tons) was imported from Zambia and milled in the far northern parts of South Africa where there is especially a strong demand for corn meal from neighboring Zimbabwe. Total corn imports reached 422,075 tons in the 2010/11 MY. Table 3: Export and import countries for white and yellow corn (1,000 tons) MY 2010/11 2011/12 (May 1, 2011 – Apr 30, 2012) (May 1, 2012 – Oct 19, 2012) White corn Yellow corn White corn Yellow corn Export Destinations Botswana 150 22 70 24 Ghana 0 8 0 0 Iran 0 41 0 0 Italy 68 0 0 0 Japan 0 49 0 0 Korea 45 302 0 12 Kuwait 0 28 0 0 Lesotho 140 7 86 7 Madagascar 0 4 0 2 Mexico 1,162 0 649 0 Mozambique 65 15 22 8 Namibia 38 16 2 11 Senegal 0 3 0 0 Somalia 19 0 0 0 Swaziland 14 56 3 24 Taiwan 0 162 0 0 Venezuela 31 0 0 0 TOTAL EXPORTS 1,734 712 832 88 Import Suppliers Zambia 134 0 10 0 India 0 1 0 0 Ukraine 0 146 0 0 Romania 0 141 0 0 TOTAL IMPORTS 134 288 10 0 Source: SAGIS Prices SAFEX prices as of October 19, 2012, are shown in Table 4. White corn and yellow corn prices fell back slightly from their record levels in July by eight percent and seven percent, respectively, after good early summer rains were received in most of the corn producing areas of South Africa. However, on a year-on-year basis, white corn and yellow corn prices is respectively ten percent and 14 percent higher as global corn stock are still tight due to the impact of the United States drought. Table 4: SAFEX prices for corn SAFEX Futures prices (as of 10/19/2012) Commodity 2012/10 2012/12 2013/03 2013/05 2013/07 White corn R2,506/t R2,544/t R2,558/t R2,250/t R2,227/t ($287/t) ($291/t) ($293/t) ($258/t) ($255/t) Yellow corn R2,530/t R2,563/t R2,537/t R2,256/t R2,232/t ($290/t) ($294/t) ($290/t) ($258/t) ($256/t) Table 5: PS&D Table for Corn Corn South Africa 2010/2011 2011/2012 2012/2013 Market Year Begin: May 2011 Market Year Begin: May 2012 Market Year Begin: May 2012 USDA Official New Post USDA Official New Post USDA Official New Post Area Harvested 2,859 2,859 3,200 3,142 3,300 3,300 Beginning Stocks 5,169 5,169 3,418 3,419 2,743 3,077 Production 10,924 10,924 11,500 12,133 13,500 12,700 MY Imports 421 422 25 25 25 25 TY Imports 6 6 425 425 25 0 TY Imp. from U.S. 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total Supply 16,514 16,515 14,943 15,577 16,268 15,802 MY Exports 2,446 2,446 1,500 1,800 2,500 2,400 TY Exports 2,839 2,839 1,800 1,800 2,300 2,300 Feed and Residual 4,950 4,950 4,950 4,950 5,100 5,000 FSI Consumption 5,700 5,700 5,750 5,750 6,000 5,750 Total Consumption 10,650 10,650 10,700 10,700 11,100 10,750 Ending Stocks 3,418 3,419 2,743 3,077 2,668 2,652 Total Distribution 16,514 16,515 14,943 15,577 16,268 15,802 1000 HA, 1000 MT, MT/HA
Posted: 17 November 2012

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