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Argentina ends 2021-22 wheat harvest at record 21.8 mil mt on robust yields

Highlights

Some 87% crop in excellent-to-good condition, 13% fair

Global shortages seen pushing exports to 13.3 million mt

Argentina's 2021-22 wheat exports limit set at 12.5 mil mt

  • Author
  • Sampad Nandy
  • Editor
  • Daniel Lalor
  • Commodity
  • Agriculture

Argentina has harvested a record 21.8 million mt of wheat in marketing year 2021-22 (December-November), the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange said, which was up 28% on MY 2020-21.

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The increase in Argentina's wheat output assumes significance amid global tightening of supplies and limitations on exports from different countries.

The exchange had projected the harvest at 21.5 million mt in a Dec. 23 report. The previous record was 19 million mt in MY 2018-19.

Farmers had sown over an area of 6.6 million hectares and saw an average national yield of 3.4 mt/hectare, according to BAGE, which said that despite the ongoing La Nina event, output rose to record levels due to adequate distribution of showers spatially.

Of the total wheat crop, 87% was in excellent-to-good condition while 13% was in a fair condition.In the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report Jan. 9, the US Department of Agriculture increased Argentina's wheat output forecast to 20.5 million mt, from 20 million mt in its December report.

Exports seen rising

According to the exchange, Argentina's wheat exports for MY 2021-22 were pegged at 13.3 million mt. In MY 2020-21, Argentina exported 11.2 million mt of wheat.

Argentina has, however, imposed a limit on its exports amid rising external demand for its crop to keep inflation in check.

The agriculture ministry Dec. 17 capped wheat exports for MY 2021-22 at 12.5 million mt. The USDA has pegged Argentina's wheat exports in MY 2021-22 at 13.5 million mt.

The country is a key wheat supplier, primarily to neighboring Brazil. However, with global supplies seen drying up from Russia, the US and Canada, consuming countries in the Middle East are also looking at Argentina to meet their requirements.

Russian wheat exports have been restricted due to increasing export taxes and a quota limiting shipments from Russia at 8 million mt between Feb. 15 and June 30.

The harvest in the US and Canada was seen declining due to adverse weather conditions, especially a warmer summer.

Apart from those concerns, Ukraine also was said to have been considering limiting exports of milling wheat at 4 million mt during January-June.

The curbs on the exports are likely to have larger impact for global agricultural markets with supply seen disrupted.