Argentina's soybean crush fell 7.4% from a month ago to 3.6 million mt in August — the third consecutive month of decline — data from the country's agriculture ministry showed, signaling tighter soybean oil supplies ahead.
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The crush volume, however, rose 4% year on year, according to data released Sept. 21.
Between January and August, the soybean crush has reached 29.5 million mt, up 13.4% from the same period a year ago.
In the 2020-21 marketing year (April 2021-March 2022), Argentina's domestic soybean crush is forecast to reach 40.8 million mt, according to the US Department of Agriculture's September World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report. The estimate fell from 41.5 million mt projected in August.
Argentina — the largest soybean oil exporter — saw production of the soy derivate fell 7.2% month on month to 700,926 mt, according to the ministry data. But the volume was up 2.6% year on year.
The country has a national biodiesel mandate that requires a 5% blend in gasoil, and soybean oil is used as the main feedstock in biodiesel.
Soybean crushers had reduced capacities and some even idled their plants after the national government cut the mandate to 5% from 10% in July, market sources had said.
Low crush, combined with slow farmer selling, could impact soybean oil exports in the coming months, sources said.