The USDA released their first 2021 oat production estimates today. Total world oat production is forecast to fall to 4.7% to 23,302 ThMt. If realized. this would be 2.2% above the five-year average.
Growers will seed 2.6% fewer hectares globally this year with oat yields forecast to fall in the EU, Australia, Chile, and Ukraine. Gains are forecast in the other top ten producers (see table 2).
These are early estimates and likely to change as we move through the growing season. Canada is a case in point where extreme dryness has oats on a path to below-average yields.
The USDA is forecasting world oat imports to climb to a record high 2,805 ThMt as global demand for oat products, including oat milk continues to climb.
The USDA is forecasting higher (up 7.5%) oat imports for the top 10 importers, including the US, up 5.5%, China up 20%, and Chile up 15% (see table pg. 2). COVID quarantines have certainly increased demand for oats but some of the gains are expected to continue after quarantines are eased as consumers look for healthier foods.
In looking at other crops the USDA May USDA Crop Report was slightly bearish as WASDE cut US wheat, soybean, and corn exports far more than expected (relative to the current crop year). The US export cuts were made despite a 7 MMTs cut in the 2021 Brazilian corn crop and the political obligation for China to secure at least $43.5 Bil of US ag goods? Once again, WASDE is being conservative with its US ag trade forecasts – even as the world economy exhibits its best economic growth rates in a decade. CBT grain/soy futures sold off on USDA report data.