Chicago wheat futures prices rallied around 10 per cent since mid-January as world wheat markets entered a period of anxiety. What is driving the market and how might it affect Australian growers? Read the commentary contributed today by Thomas Kim.
With headers taking the first cuts into sorghum crops in northern New South Wales and in Queensland’s Darling Downs region, market prices last week spiked and turned around again as quickly as they had risen.
The Australian sorghum crop now in the early stages of harvest is forecast to produce 1.47 million tonnes (Mt), according to the Australian Crop Report released today by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES).
Rain across much of the northern summer cropping zone over the weekend has boosted prospects for mung beans, sorghum and cotton, with some areas receiving their best falls for the season.
The median yield for the Queensland and northern NSW sorghum crop is forecast at 2.92 tonnes per hectare, just below the long-term median of 2.97t/ha, according to the January regional outlook from the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI).
Hopes for average yields for much of the sorghum crop planted in Queensland and northern NSW hinge on rain in the next two weeks to even out already patchy conditions.
Pacific Seeds is set to debut its new imidazolinone-tolerant grain sorghum line featuring its proprietary “igrowth” trait at a series of field days across the summer cropping region.
Rain is the key ingredient needed to kick along summer crops in the northern farming zone where this week’s heatwave conditions are drawing down moisture reserves and hampering spraying operations.
The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) December crop report has raised its estimate for Canada’s 2017 wheat crop by three million tonnes (Mt) to 30Mt, confirming the overall bearish tone expected by the market from these figures which have fine-tuned crop numbers for year end.
Graincorp estimates the amount of feed wheat created by heavy rain in the past week is likely to be absorbed domestically by the feedgrain market in Australia’s eastern states, where a northern deficit continues to keep tonnage away from export.