AUSTRALIA exported 417,215 tonnes of feed barley, 55,720t of malting barley and 50,115t of sorghum in January, according to the latest export data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
January’s feed barley exports represent a drop of 61 percent from the December total, with Saudi Arabia on 115,219t, Jordan on 91,280t and The Philippines on 56,332t the biggest customers.
Malting barley exports in January were up 154pc on the December total, with Mexico on 33,000t, South Korea on 11,027t and Singapore on 5536t the largest markets.
January sorghum exports rose 12pc from the December total, with Japan being the surprise volume customer on 31,564t, ahead of China on 17,223t and The Philippines on 904t.
Flexi Grain pool manager Sam Roache said while exports of feed barley to Middle East destinations and Japan fell away in January, an uptick was seen in shipments to The Philippines and Thailand.
“Demand in South-east Asia is slowly picking up due to the good relative value of barley into feed rations versus feed wheat and corn,” Mr Roache said.
“The reason for the overall drop in tonnage is not structural and is not a reflection of a sharp drop in demand for barley.
“The reality is that December was a big-volume month for barley and we often see a small month following a large one.”
Shipping stems for February and March point to barley shipments rebounding to 800,000t plus per month.
“That puts us well on track to hit our 8Mt export target.”
Mr Roache said feed barley’s lacklustre export margins versus wheat and other commodities have yet to harm its ability to hit export estimates, and China remains on the cards.
“The export margins will improve dramatically if we can return to the China markets in the near future.”
On that note, China appeared as the destination for 99t of January-shipped malting barley.
“While it is hardly going to move the market, it is hopefully a sign of things to come.”
Sorghum exports remained low in January to reflect very low stocks prior to new-crop.
“We see Japan has taken an unusually high share of the monthly exports, coming in above China, but with such a small overall month, there is no major take-away and China will very likely rise to the top again in February.”
The sorghum harvest in southern Queensland and northern New South Wales is well advanced, and new-crop shipments got going last month.
“We expect export volumes to rebound in the February figures before gathering more momentum into March and April.
“The sorghum market has all the makings for another large export program.”
|Papua New Guinea||50||50||0||100|
Table 1: Australian feed barley exports for November and December 2022 and January 2023. Source: ABS
Table 2: Australian malting barley exports for November and December 2022 and January 2023. Source: ABS
Table 3: Australian sorghum exports for November and December 2022 and January 2023. Source: ABS
Grain Central: Get our free news straight to your inbox – Click here