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World Grain Harvest Seen Rising 7.2% on Corn, Wheat Crops

February 28, 2013

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Feb. 28 (Bloomberg) -- The world grain crop will climb 7.2 percent in the coming season, aided by larger harvests of corn and wheat, according to Alfred C. Toepfer International GmbH.

Production will rise to 2.406 billion metric tons in the 2013-14 season starting in July in most nations, said Stefan Vogel, head of economics at the Hamburg-based cereal trader. The global harvest will fall 3.1 percent to 2.244 billion tons in the current period from 2.315 billion tons in 2011-12, he said.

Grain crops are poised to fall in the current season after the worst drought since the 1930s last year in the U.S., the world’s biggest grower of corn and exporter of wheat. Corn and soybeans climbed to records in 2012 on the Chicago Board of Trade and wheat reached a four-year high.

"We have high prices, which are encouraging a supply reaction, which will mean we will see high areas of grains, high areas of oilseeds," Vogel said at the Outlook for Agriculture 2013 conference in Brussels today. "We expect that yields will come back to other levels compared to the dramatic situation we had in the U.S., in Russia, Ukraine and so on in the last season."

Europe, U.S.

Wheat growers will reap 682 million tons globally in 2013- 14, partly because of bigger crops in the European Union, Russia and Ukraine, Vogel said. That compares with 654 million tons a year earlier. Global corn output will rise 14 percent to 976 million tons from 854 million tons in 2012-13, with farmers set to plant more in the U.S., he said.


"The only thing we can do right now is look at the weather and see how things may evolve, because the corn is not even planted in the U.S., but will only start a couple of weeks from now," Vogel said. In Russia, there has been "below-normal precipitation since early November. Over there, it’s definitely a thing we need to have an eye on in the next months," he said.

Toepfer is owned by Archer-Daniels-Midland Co., the world’s biggest corn processor, and Union InVivo, the largest shipper of French wheat, according to its website.


--With assistance from Whitney McFerron in London. Editors: Dan Weeks, Sharon Lindores.


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