Global wheat, corn crops may fall in 2014-15: IGC

LONDON (Reuters) — Global wheat and corn crops may decline slightly in 2014-15 as yields fall to more normal levels, the International Grains Council said on Thursday.

“Output (of wheat) could decline by two percent year-on-year as yields are unlikely to be as high as the exceptional levels the previous year,” the IGC said in a monthly report.

The IGC projected a global wheat crop of 696 million tonnes in 2014-15, down from a forecast 708 million in the current season and slightly below expected total wheat use next season of 698 million tonnes.

“Large opening (wheat) stocks will boost total supplies in 2014-15 but consumption is expected to absorb output, leaving carryover stocks at the end of the year almost unchanged,” the IGC said.

The IGC said the global corn crop in 2014-15 was seen down one percent from this season’s record 959 million tonnes, also reflecting a return to more normal yields.

“Yields are also expected to retreat from this season’s highs for the 2014-15 (corn), barley and rapeseed/canola crops,” the IGC said.

For the current 2013-14 season, the IGC made only minor adjustments, raising the global wheat crop overall by 1 million tonnes to 708 million.

The IGC raised wheat crop forecasts for Australia (27.0 million tonnes from 26.2 million) and Brazil (5.5 million from 4.8 million), but lowered the outlook for Kazakhstan (13.9 million from 14.6 million tonnes).

Global corn production in 2013-14 was maintained at a record 959 million with no significant revisions.

The IGC did, however, raise its forecast for global corn consumption in 2013-14 by four million tonnes to 932 million.

“Consumption is expected to expand eight percent, year-on-year, led by a sharp rise in feed use, but world closing stocks will still likely be up 21 percent, year-on-year,” the IGC said.

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