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French January Soft-Wheat Exports Rose 44% on Algeria Demand

French soft-wheat exports jumped 44 percent in January from a year earlier as shipments to Algeria more than tripled, customs data showed. Barley exports rose 57 percent, helped by deliveries to Syria and Tunisia.

France shipped 1.76 million metric tons of soft wheat in the first month of 2013, climbing from 1.22 million tons a year earlier, according to Bloomberg calculations using trade data published online this week.

Wheat and barley exports from France are forecast to climb in the crop year through June after drought cut output in Russia and Ukraine last year. Soft-wheat export sales may rise to 16.9 million tons from 16.1 million tons in the previous season, crop office FranceAgriMer predicts.

Soft-wheat sales to Algeria, the largest buyer of French wheat, jumped to 328,275 tons from 90,815 tons a year earlier, the customs data show. France was the world’s fifth-biggest wheat shipper last year, after the U.S., Australia, Russia and Canada, based on data from the International Grains Council.

Soft-wheat exports in the first seven months of the crop year that started July 1 were 9.48 million tons, compared with 8.72 million tons in the year-earlier period.

The monthly volume of barley exports climbed to 565,955 tons from 360,052 tons in January 2012, lifted by a jump in deliveries to Belgium as well as 55,000 tons shipped to Syria and 23,750 tons for Tunisia, from none a year earlier.

French exports of durum wheat, the hard variety used to make pasta, dropped 42 percent to 96,182 tons from 166,437 tons. Corn exports in January fell 7.7 percent to 506,759 tons from 548,844 tons a year earlier.

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