LONDON (Reuters) — The International Grains Council on Thursday raised its forecast for global wheat production in 2013-14 and stocks at the end of the season, partly reflecting improved crop outlooks in the European Union and North Africa.
Global wheat output was projected at 693 million tonnes, up from a previous forecast of 691 million and well above the prior season’s 655 million.
The European Union’s wheat crop was forecast to total 143.3 million tonnes, up from a previous projection of 142.0 million and well above last season’s 131.6 million.
A rise in North Africa prospects was driven by Morocco where the crop is now forecast to reach 7.0 million tonnes, up from a prior projection of 5.0 million and just 3.9 million harvested in 2012-13.
Wheat consumption in 2013-14 was trimmed to 687 million tonnes from a previous forecast of 688 million but remained above the prior season’s 673 million.
Stocks of wheat at the end of the 2013-14 season were raised to 180 million tonnes, up from a previous forecast of 176 million and the prior season’s 175 million.
Global corn production was cut by two million tonnes to 943 million with improved prospects in Ukraine more than offset by diminished outlooks in China and the European Union.
Ukraine’s maize crop in 2013-14 was forecast to total 28 million tonnes, up from a previous forecast of 24 million but China’s was cut by four million to 210 million.
The EU’s maize crop was projected at 64.2 million, down from a previous forecast of 65.7 million but remained well above the prior season’s 56.3 million