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Australia exports 46,399t of canola in July ahead of clouded new-crop outlook

by Liz Wells, 21 September 2018

AUSTRALIA continued its pattern of a lone bulk cargo per month in July with exports totalling 46,399 tonnes, down 20 per cent from the June figure of 57,810t, according to the latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

This canola crop in central Victoria is one of many being cut for hay.

Australian Oilseeds Federation (AOF) executive officer, Nick Goddard, said such low exports at this time of year, as old-crop supplies ran down, were not unusual, and the market was now looking at prospects for the drought and frost-affected new-crop.

“A key factor in our export surplus will be the demand from east-coast crushers, and the likelihood of them having to bring in seed from South Australia and Western Australia,” Mr Goddard said.

“It’s been done before, and if one crusher does it, that might leave enough seed in eastern states to supply the others.”

Eastern Australia’s biggest canola crushers are Cargill at Newcastle, MSM Milling at Manildra, Riverina Biofuels and Energy near Wagga Wagga, and GrainCorp Oils in Numurkah.

All of them, perhaps bar GrainCorp Oils, are expected to have to look further afield than normal to fill their crush requirements due to adverse weather preventing planting or depleting yields

“Domestic demand for canola will be driven by the demand for oil, and while there’s been firmness in prices for canola meal for stockfeed, it’s just one of many ingredients available for the mix.”

Mr Goddard said recent heavy frosts in parts of WA, Victoria and southern New South Wales was likely to cut further area out of seed production.

“We’ve already seen a lot cut for hay, and some growers who might be looking at yields as low as 0.2 tonnes per hectare after these frosts are going to be thinking these crops have more value to feed to sheep.”

Mr Goddard said the hot and dry summer in Europe, a major market for Australian canola, would bolster its demand for oilseeds, and China could well seek increased supplies as its trade dispute with the US continued.

The AOF’s initial crop forecast for Australia’s 2018 canola production pegged production at 2.66 million tonnes from 2.15 million hectares.

CANOLA May June July Total
Bangladesh 3208 1702 2440 7350
Belgium 84 0 42 125
China 5433 3610 3360 12403
Japan 3576 1057 27952 32586
Korea 721 0 800 1521
Malaysia 0 1928 3488 5416
Nepal 3345 4497 6781 14623
New Zealand 291 514 510 1314
South Africa 1 0 0 1
UAE 20680 44000 0 64680
Vietnam 0 501 1026 1528
TOTAL 37338 57810 46399 141547

Table 1: ABS canola export data for May, June and July 2018.

 

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