According to Beijing Review China has produced a bumper grain harvest for the fifth consecutive year, and reportedly expects a larger surplus this year than its 2007 excess of 50 million tons. “I think China includes wheat, maize and soya beans in its definition of grain,” said a US agricultural analyst, who wished to remain anonymous.
“But for maize, over the past few years China has either balanced its supply with demand or fallen short. It would be interesting to know how much of its expected surplus is maize because that could ease some of the pressure on the world market.” S outh Africa is anticipating a maize harvest of 11,6 million tons. According to the latest figures by the Crop Estimates Committee.
According to Grain SA chief economist Nico Hawkins, in the past 11 weeks Africa has exported 232 000t. “Some 74 500t has been sold to Zimbabwe,” said Hawkins. he US analyst added that it was going to be a challenge to transport the maize as he suspected it would be moved via road and not rail. “This could make it even more expensive for Zimbabwe and one wonders if they can even afford that maize.” he analyst said the world maize price is still very much driven by US production, noting that southern hemisphere countries are now waiting to see what the US harvest yield is as it will determine whether it will be profitable for countries such as South Africa to plant or not. – David Steynberg