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International Grains Council Raises Forecast for U.S. Sorghum Exports

The International Grains Council (IGC) has raised its forecast for U.S. sorghum exports for the 2015/16 season from a previous estimate of 9.4 million tons to 10 million tons.

Earlier in August, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) set its forecast for next season’s sorghum exports at 10.923 million tons and announced that 2.8 million tons have already been sold for export for next season compared to 1.29 million tons at the same time last year.

In light of these forecasts, U.S. sorghum exports for the current season slowed almost to a standstill despite a robust start, which could be a reflection of the fallout from China’s recent economic slowdown.

The USDA forecasted total U.S. sorghum exports of 8.89 million tons for the 2014/2015 season, and according to the latest exports sales data, 8.557 million tons have been booked for export, with 7.989 million tons shipped so far.

In July, analyst CCM predicted Chinese sorghum imports will reach 10 million tons for 2015, and the USDA estimates that Chinese demand will reach 11 million tons in 2014/15.

It remains to be seen if strong Chinese demand for sorghum will hold through the next season. China’s buyers turned to sorghum in response to high corn prices and quotas, but as the government is targeting a reduction in corn stocks, there are concerns that the Beijing may take action to reduce sorghum imports or reduce corn prices to increase usage.

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