Market News & Headlines >> USDA Raises Ag Export Forecast

USDA on Tuesday forecast U.S. agricultural exports for fiscal 2021 at a near-record $152 billion, up $11.5 billion or 8.2% from its previous forecast in August and up 11.8% from year-earlier exports of $135.9 billion. 

The increase is due largely to strong demand from China and higher corn and soybean prices. Fiscal 2021 (October 2020-September 2021) U.S. agricultural exports to China are now forecast at a record $27.0 billion, an increase of $8.5 billion from August, largely due to strong soybean and corn demand.

Exports to China are expected to be up $13 billion from fiscal 2020 and China is expected to become the top U.S. agricultural market once again, a position it last held in fiscal 2017. Canada, which had been the top market the previous three years, is projected to be the No. 2 U.S. market at $21 billion, with Mexico third at $19.5 billion. 

USDA raised its projection for U.S. soybean exports by $5.9 billion from August to a record $26.3 billion due to higher soybean prices, strong demand from China, and record volumes. The forecast for corn exports was raised by $4.2 billion to $13.2 billion as a result of reduced competition, higher corn prices and record volumes. 

Cotton exports are forecast up $300 million from August to $5.3 billion based on higher prices. Wheat exports are projected at $6.2 billion, up $200 million from August, on higher prices and slightly larger volumes. Overall major agricultural bulk commodity exports are forecast to increase 24% from the previous projection. 

However, the forecast for livestock, poultry, and dairy exports is unchanged from August at $32.3 billion, as lower exports of pork and hides and skins offset increases in beef and poultry.