World Grain Harvest Seen Jumping 7% by IGC on Corn Crop Surge

The world harvest of wheat and coarse grains such as corn is predicted to jump 7 percent in the 2013-14 season on increased planting and better yields, the International Grains Council said.

Output may rise to 1.91 billion metric tons from an estimated 1.78 billion tons in 2012-13, the London-based IGC wrote in its monthly grain market report today. Increased production will rebuild stocks depleted this season, it said.

Drought in the U.S. as well as in Ukraine and Russia hurt corn and wheat production last year. This year, U.S. farmers will sow the most acres of corn in 77 years, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported in March.

For corn, “output is forecast to increase 10 percent year-on-year, with harvested area and average yields both projected to be higher,” the IGC wrote. “Closing stocks will be very tight at the end of 2012-13, but are set to increase sharply, rising to above-average levels in 2013-14.”

World corn production may jump to 939 million tons in 2013-14 from 851 million tons a year earlier, according to the report. Stocks will climb to 143 million tons at the end of the season from 117 million tons, the IGC forecast.

Corn prices in Chicago have dropped from a record in August on expectations of increased U.S. production, while wheat has declined from a July peak.

Farmers across the world may harvest 680 million tons of wheat, from 655 million tons in 2012-13, led by gains in the European Union and the former Soviet Union on increased planting and better yields, the IGC said. Stocks are seen advancing to 181 million tons from 179 million tons.

For wheat, “a small fall in feed use in 2013-14 is likely to be outweighed by higher food and industrial use, with total consumption up 1 percent,” the IGC said. “Only a slight rise in global stocks is forecast.”

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