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Drought Further Impacting South African Corn Crop

South Africa, the biggest corn producing country in the African continent, may see its corn crop shrink this year by more than 32% as damage from the country’s worst drought in 22 years spreads in the country’s two main growing regions, according to farmer body, Grain SA.

The Crop Estimates Committee announced on February 26th that plantings in the Free State and North West provinces, which accounted for 64% of last year’s crop, may produce 9.67 million tons of corn in 2015 – the least since 2007. Conditions in the east of the third biggest producing region of Mpumalanga are also being negatively affected.

Grain SA chairman, Louw Steytler states that if rainfall levels do not rebound this year, the country’s corn crop for next year will also decrease.

It is predicted that the country will need to import at least 1.65 million tons of yellow corn, according to Grain SA as the country’s corn inventory may drop 47% to 1.22 million tons by April 30, 2016. This estimate equates to a 45 day supply, after falling to a predicted inventory of 2.3 million tons, or an 86 day supply, by the end of this April.

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