PHL seen to import record 3.2-MMT rice in ’22

  • THE Philippines, the world’s second-biggest buyer of rice, may import a record 3.2 million metric tons (MMT) this year, driven by higher-than-expected purchases abroad, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) said.

    In its monthly global grains situation report, the USDA revised upward its rice import forecast for the Philippines in 2022 by 100,000 MT from an earlier estimate of 3.1 MMT.

    Based on its latest projections, the USDA said the Philippines’s total rice imports this year would be 8.47 percent higher than last year’s 2.95 MMT recorded import volume.

    The USDA explained that it revised upwards its rice import projection for the Philippines because of the “strong” pace of imports this year.

    The Philippines’s rice imports from January to July rose by 62 percent to 2.325 MMT from last year’s 1.432 MMT, based on latest data released by the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI).

    BPI data showed that 81.72 percent or about 1.9 MMT of the rice imported during the 7-month period came from Vietnam.

    BPI data also showed that it issued 448 sanitary and phytosanitary import clearances (SPS-ICs) to 47 eligible rice importers with a total corresponding import volume of 625,743.6 MT. The 448 SPS-ICs were all issued by BPI in June.

    The USDA kept its local rice production projection for the Philippines at 12.6 MMT, or 1.44 percent higher than last year’s 12.42 MMT.

    Per USDA data, total area planted with rice this year would reach 4.8 million hectares, slightly higher than last year’s 4.76 million hectares. The Philippines’s average rice yield is projected to inch up to 4.17 MT per hectare from 4.14 MT per hectare, based on USDA data.

    The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) earlier reported that the country’s total rice inventory as of June declined by 12.3 percent to 2.22 MMT from last year’s 2.53 MMT.

    The PSA said about 47.3 percent or some 1.049 MMT of rice were stored by households while 44.8 percent or 995,230 MT were held by commercial entities (warehouses, wholesalers and retailers). The PSA added that rice stocks in the National Food Authority (NFA) warehouses as of June 1 reached 175,490 MT, accounting for 7.9 percent of total inventory during the reference period.

    “Rice stocks inventory in all sectors decreased compared with their levels in the previous year. Stocks in the households dropped by -7.3 percent, in commercial warehouses/wholesalers/retailers by -15.2 percent, and in NFA depositories by -22.0 percent,” it said.

  • Rice Market Update: USDA – Stocks Down 10%, Support Higher Paddy Prices

  • By Dwight Roberts, U.S. Rice Producers Association

    The market continues to plod along, but this week with a shot in the arm from the USDA planted acres and rice stocks reports. As all expected, acres were down from last year, registering in this report total drop of 189,000 acres, split 70,000 acres of long grain and 106,000 acres of medium grain.

    This is perhaps less than some were expecting, so at this point we will keep an eye on weather to determine how much of the planted crop makes it to a healthy harvest. To that point, higher than normal temperatures in Texas are stressing the rice crop already, causing crop experts to warn of lower yields. The triple digit temps on the backs of a drought are not boding well for a strong crop at this point.

    The Stocks report paints a decent picture — one that helps support the higher paddy prices that have been sustained on the ground. Total rice stocks were reported down 10% from this time last year; long grain rough down 11%, long grain milled down 5.5%. Crop Progress is right on track, except in California where cool weather during planting has all but stunted the rice plants, slowing their growth to maturity.  And while Texas is experiencing dangerously high temps, cooler weather patterns in Arkansas and Louisiana bode well for harvest.

    A recent GAIN report on Mexico published this week shows an increase in expected production in the region, up to 291,000 MT (rough), which is up 6.2% or 17,000 MT over USDA’s original estimate of 274,000 MT. This equates to approximately 200,000 MT of milled rice, correspondingly up from the 188,000 MT estimate. The increase is a result of increased plantings, and a higher yield projection, however local sources temper this expectation with concerns about water availability in Campeche to finish the crop.

    In Asia, Thai prices dropped again, down to $410 pmt from $420 pmt las week. This is coming much more in line with the prices from three months ago before Iraq stepped in and tightened supply up a bit. Vietnam held constant at $420 pmt, as did India at $350 pmt.

    The weekly USDA Export Sales report shows net sales of 17,500 MT, down 13% from last week’s dismal report, and 45% from the prior 4-week average.  Exports of 45,800 MT were down 13% from the previous week and 25% from the prior 4-week average. The destinations were primarily to Haiti (15,100 MT), Japan (12,000 MT), Honduras (8,800 MT), Canada (3,400 MT), and South Korea (2,700 MT).

  • Rice Market Update: Uncertainty Remains Key Factor

  • The true nature of long grain plantings continue to be debated in the U.S., with the USDA showing flat to last year, and the industry being confident of a 10-15% cut. Time will tell, but futures prices are showing a suspected cut in acreage, and paddy prices would support the same. Uncertainty of both the market and weather continue to hover over farmers. Meterorologists at Colorado State University are predicting an “above average” 2022 hurricane season that begins June 1. Nineteen storms are forecast for the Atlantic basin. Above-average sea surface temperatures and the lack of El Nino developing that would suppress hurricane activity by increasing vertical wind shear is the contributing factor.

    Prices for long grain milled are priced at or just above $650 pmt, whereas prices in South America are at least $100 pmt below that. South America is in the peak of their harvest season, with several questions swirling around the drought situation in Brazil. We know that Uruguay has crested the high point, and is on the downhill slope of the last 20% of their crop. Argentina is just ahead of them. Brazil and Paraguay are the big swings that will be coming to light in the next few weeks.

    In Asia, prices have held steady despite the inflationary rise that so many other commodities have seen. For more than a quarter now, prices in Thailand and Vietnam have oscillated around $400 pmt, while India and Pakistan have been around $360 pmt. This can in large part be attributed to India, who hasn’t slowed exports over the COVID-19 pandemic, and has been responsible for its third record crop in as many years.

    India’s farm subsidies, which many speculate have led to their record crop, has blunted the inflationary impacts of rice world-wide. With rice being the most basic food calorie for human consumption that prevents hunger for the poorest nations, this can be viewed as a positive in the global environment. However, India’s rice subsidy violations have put a burden on many rice producers around the globe; these violations were front-and-center this week with the World Trade Organization (WTO).

    India has been called out by the U.S. rice industry and others to stop creating an unfair playing field with their rice subsidy program. It is making rice from the United States and other origins uncompetitive on a global scale, and can have severe detrimental impacts on food security world-wide in the future.

    Prices on the ground show Texas in the lead at $17/cwt. Louisiana is strong at $15.25/cwt, while prices in Mississippi, Arkansas, and Missouri are fluctuation between $14.75-$15.75 based on variety and qualities.

    The weekly USDA Export Sales report shows net sales of 8,300 MT this week, a marketing-year low, down 51% from the previous week and 81% from the prior 4-week average. Increases primarily for Mexico (13,700 MT), Haiti (7,300 MT), Jordan (4,000 MT), the Dominican Republic (2,000 MT), and Honduras (1,500 MT), were offset by reductions primarily for Colombia (22,000 MT).

    Exports of 80,300 MT were up noticeably from the previous week and up 98% from the prior 4-week average. The destinations were primarily to Mexico (32,700 MT), Colombia (22,300 MT), Haiti (15,300 MT), El Salvador (4,100 MT), and Canada (2,000 MT).In the futures market, May 22 prices are down just over 1% this week to $16.010. May 23 contracts are about flat from last week, now at $16.615. Average Daily Volume registers at 411, down 23% from last week, while open interest is flat at 9,701.

  • Food Outlook by USDA

    USDA lowers 2017-18 global rice supply forecast

  • USDA estimates India rice production for 2017/18 at 10.75 Cr metric tons (milled), down about 2% from last year’s record crop.
    Green paddy rice
                The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has lowered its estimate for global Rice supplies for the year 2017-18 to 61.93 Cr tons, primarily on a smaller crop projected for India. USDA estimates India rice production for 2017/18 at 10.75 Cr metric tons (milled), down about 2% from last year’s record crop. The decrease was mainly due to a drop in harvested area. Harvested area is estimated at 4.27 Cr hectares, down 4% from last month but up 1% from last year. Rough yield is estimated at 3.78 kilograms per hectare, down 1% from the previous year. World Rice consumption is estimated to down fractionally to 48.04 Cr tons in 2017-18. Global 2017-18 trade is raised to 4.49 Cr tons on higher exports by Thailand, Vietnam, Burma, and China more than offsetting reductions for India, Pakistan, and the United States. Trade is still below the 2016-17 record of 4.53 Cr tons, USDA said. World ending stocks are lowered this month to 13.89 Cr tons for 2017-18, still higher than last year and at the highest level since 2000-01.
  • Rice Outlook by USDA

    Grain – World Markets & Trade by USDA

    Grain – World Markets & Trade by USDA

    Grain – World Markets & Trade by USDA

    Food Outlook by USDA

    India on pace for record rice procurement

  •  rice
    WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. — Riding on expected record harvest, India’s rice procurement already has surpassed the previous record of 36 million tonnes in market year 2009-10. The country’s rice procurement through May 24 is estimated at 36.9 million tonnes compared to 32.6 million tonnes during the corresponding period last year, according to a May 19 report from the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). With additional procurement of rabi and summer rice expected to continue in eastern and southern states, India’s rice procurement in market year 2016-17 is likely to touch a record 38 million tonnes, about 4 million tonnes higher than last year and 2 million tonnes higher than the previous record. The USDA estimates India’s market year 2016-17 rice production at a record 108 million tonnes. Market year 2016-17 area is revised lower to 42.9 million hectares based on the revised official estimates from the Ministry of Agriculture. Consequently, market year 2016-17 rice yields are estimated at a record 2.51 tonnes per hectare. According to the USDA report, the normal 2016 monsoon supported timely planting, lower incidence of pest and diseases, and relatively lower harvest losses due to untimely rains at the time of harvest. The relatively higher share of high yielding non-Basmati rice compared to the long grain Basmati rice supported higher rice production in the north Indian states. Indian rice exports have been strong since the beginning of calendar year 2017 on relatively strong demand for non-Basmati rice, mainly from African countries and neighboring Bangladesh. According to preliminary official statistics, rice exports from October 2016 to March 2017 were estimated at 5.2 million tonnes compared to 4.8 million tonnes for the corresponding period last year, largely on strong resurgence in the demand for both Basmati and non-Basmati rice since December 2016. Assuming no significant changes in the price parity for Indian rice during the remaining marketing year, market year 2016-17 exports are likely to reach 11 million tonnes compared to 10.2 million tonnes in the previous year. However, any change in the import policy of the major destination country or in the value of the Indian rupee against the U.S. dollar may affect the export prospects in the second half of the marketing year. Market year 2017-18 rice exports are forecast at 10 million tonnes on sufficient domestic supplies, assuming continued export demand and international price parity for Indian rice. 
  • Iraq Makes First Purchase of U.S. Rice under the U.S.-Iraq Memorandum of Understanding

  • Iraq Makes First Purchase of U.S. Rice under the U.S.-Iraq Memorandum of Understanding

    May 30, 2017
    Destination: Iraq
    Iraq Makes First Purchase of US Rice, Port of Lake Charles
    ARLINGTON, VA -- With help from a last minute, full-court press by USA Rice involving Congress, the U.S. Embassy, and high-level State Department and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials, Iraq made its first-ever purchase of U.S. rice under the U.S. – Iraq Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).  This sale will help U.S. rice exporters gain a foothold in the Iraqi market, and heightens prospects for new sales in the future.   Iraq’s precedent-setting purchase of 30,000 MT of U.S. long grain milled rice comes after more than 16 months without any Iraqi purchases of U.S. rice.  “We are very pleased to see that Iraq has stepped up to meet its commitment to purchase U.S. rice under this agreement,” said USA Rice President & CEO Betsy Ward.  “This could not have come at a better time for the U.S. rice industry, and we are grateful for the cooperation of the Iraqi Grain Board (IGB) and the Ministry of Trade (MOT), and are confident that this transaction will mean more Iraqi purchases of U.S. rice in the near future.”   The 30,000 MT sale for July delivery was awarded to ADM, and comes almost a full year since the MOU was negotiated between the MOT and the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.   “The USA Rice team, including our local office in Iraq, worked hand-in-glove with Congress, the State Department, and USDA over the last year to keep the pressure on, ensuring that Iraq follows through on its commitment to purchase competitively-priced U.S. grown rice under this MOU,” said Hugh Maginnis, USA Rice vice president international.  “We appreciate the teamwork and persistence of so many people who contributed to this successful sale.  This gives our rice farmers a very welcome shot in the arm.”
  • Cambodia to export more rice to China

  • May 19, 2017 - by Eric Schroeder

    WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. — China is expected to become a bigger export market for Cambodian rice, with reports suggesting China will import 200,000 tonnes of rice per year from Cambodia, according to a May 15 report from the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

    The USDA said Cambodia’s rice millers have shifted their attention to the expanding Chinese market in light of new rules in the European Union that have tightened the residue limit of tricyclazole on rice. Cambodian rice farmers commonly use tricyclazole to control rice blast fungus, but effective June 2017 the E.U. said it will implement a new threshold of tricyclazole residue for white rice — 0.01 mg per kg of paddy — and in December 2017 will implement a new tricyclazole residue level for fragrant rice — at 0.01 mg per kg.

    “Amid rice millers’ concern of the E.U.’s potential ban on Cambodian rice that fails to meet the chemical residue threshold, the government of Cambodia is looking into substitute options and raising awareness of farmers on proper usage of fungicides,” the USDA said.

    Cambodia exported a total of 542,144 tonnes of milled rice in 2016, up 0.7% from 2015. China was the largest destination, importing 127,460 tonnes, a figure that is forecast to grow to 200,000 in 2017, the USDA said. The increase in demand from China is expected to outpace the potential decline in demand from traditional E.U. buyers.

    “Last December, China National Cereals, Oils, and Foodstuffs Corporation (COFCO) approved 18 Cambodian rice millers for exporting rice to China as part of an agreement signed between COFCO and the Cambodia Rice Federation (CRF),” the USDA said. “Additionally, the Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Forestry (MAFF) selected 28 rice millers who have demonstrated competence to meet the requirements for exporting rice into China. The CRF is urging the government to facilitate more access to the China market to offset potential decrease demand from E.U.

    “The cross border rice trade is a vital pathway for Cambodia rice export into Thailand and Vietnam. However, Thailand’s reduction in stock and a production recovery this year show no signs of an increase in import demand. Meanwhile, the cross border trade with Vietnam is robust mostly because of strong demand for Cambodian rice to serve local Vietnamese consumers who prefer quality fragrant rice.”

    Overall milled rice exports are forecast to increase 5% to 570,000 tonnes in 2017, and 8% to 615,000 tonnes in 2018, the USDA said.



    The nonpartisan U.S.-Cuba Trade and Economic Council says the first shipment of U.S. rice to Cuba in nine years apparently passed unnoticed in the ongoing debate over trade with the island nation. Based in New York, the council, which produces monthly reports on commerce involving the countries, says the comparatively small cargo of 157.8 tonnes of parboiled rice, some mixed with grain, was worth $252,000 and sailed from the Houston area. According to the council, U.S. ag exports to Cuba totaled $232 million in 2016, up by 36% from $170.6 million in 2015. Frozen chicken meat accounted for 41% of sales in 2016; soybeans, soy oil, and soy meal were 28%; and corn was 16%. Since 2012, frozen chicken has been the number one purchase by Havana, although purchases plummeted to $78 million in 2015 during the bird flu epidemic. Sales rebounded to $95 million last year. The rice shipment occurred at the end of 2016, but it takes a while for exports to be tallied by the Census Bureau and made public. Far larger rice sales, with a cumulative value of nearly $191 million, were recorded from 2002 to 2008.
    U.S. farm groups have argued for a change in law to allow private financing of ag exports to Cuba. The sales were exempted from the overall U.S. trade embargo in 2000, but payment must be made in cash upon delivery. Some $5.3 billion in U.S. goods have been sold under the terms of the 2000 law. This article was produced in collaboration with the Food & Environment Reporting Network, an independent, nonprofit news organization producing investigative reporting on food, agriculture, and environmental health.