COVID-19 took its toll on the April World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates released Thursday, especially for corn and soybeans.
This month’s 2019/20 U.S. corn outlook is for reduced imports, greater feed and residual use, lower food, seed, and industrial use, and larger stocks. Feed and residual use is raised 150 million bushels to 5.675 billion. This is based on corn stocks reported as of March 1 which indicated disappearance during the December-February quarter rose about 4 percent relative to a year ago. Lower forecast corn used for ethanol also supports larger feed and residual use. Corn used to produce ethanol is lowered 375 million bushels to 5.050 billion based on the latest indications from Energy Information Administration data indicating an unprecedented decline in ethanol production and motor gasoline consumption as a result of COVID-19. Partly offsetting is a forecast increase in the amount of corn used for alcohol for beverages and manufacturing use.
The decline in ethanol production is being felt in the livestock feed sector with less production of distillers grains. “Domestic soybean meal use is forecast higher with an expected reduction in available supplies of DDGs resulting from lower ethanol production. With higher crush only partly offsetting lower exports, seed, and residual use, ending stocks are projected at 480 million bushels, up 55 million.”