One Report Says Global Grain at Record High
by Rich Keller (Ag Professional) As most of the reports circulating in the United States are about anticipated grain shortages in meeting demand, a report came out this week from one organization that was headlined: “Global grain production at record high despite extreme climatic events.”
Highlights were pulled from a new Worldwatch Institute report that examines rising rates of global grain production and consumption, the institute noted as it explained the headline.
“Global grain production is expected to reach a record high of 2.4 billion tons in 2012, an increase of 1 percent from 2011 levels,” according to the research conducted by the Worldwatch Institute’s Nourishing the Planet project (www.worldwatch.org).
The institute jumped from reporting on 2011 grain volumes to projected 2012 volumes and from numbers it compiled to those of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the International Grains Council.
Per numbers reportedly pulled from the FAO, the production of grain for animal feed has been growing the fastest—a 2.1 percent increase from 2011 during 2012. Grain for direct human consumption grew 1.1 percent from 2011 during this year. READ MORE and MORE (Ethanol Producer Magazine)
Excerpt from Ethanol Producer Magazine: …fHere we are, facing a global increase in corn production forecast at 4 percent. The USDA numbers still put the U.S. corn crop at the 8th largest. Yet, the worst drought in 50 years put the U.S. markets into wild weather mode. That is, speculators dove in to play the market and drive corn prices well past the 2008 market highs. Ironically, that weather-crazed market, if I recall correctly, happened after record rains and flooding that came on top of global concerns about drought-reduced wheat production. That weather market was much shorter-lived.
I have no answers, only questions. How can the U.S. market be so high when globally, there is record grain production forecast, including an increase in corn production? Many would argue that speculators play an important role in the market, but shouldn’t there be some recognition that speculation sometime defies reality? While many are justifiably concerned about the impact of higher grains prices, particularly on livestock feeders, one benefit of those higher prices is that it is stimulating investment in agriculture. Isn’t that a good thing? READ MORE