Global Rice Production is at a Record

Global rice production is at a record this month, primarily due to higher production in India. Trade, too, is now at a record, with higher imports forecast for Sri Lanka in the midst of a smaller-than-expected crop. India’s exports are raised to record levels. Global stocks are up this month on higher production in India, according the data from USDA.

Over the past month, U.S. export quotes for bagged milled rice rose relative to Western Hemisphere and Asian origins. U.S. quotes rose $5/ton to $590, reflecting tightening supplies. Meanwhile, South American quotes dropped as new crop begins to be harvested in some regions with Uruguay now nearly $70/ton less than the United States. Asian quotes declined as Indonesia’s demand subsided, but Vietnamese quotes fell the most with new crop becoming available. Quotes from Thailand, India, and Vietnam are currently trading within a narrow range of $410-$420/ton. Pakistan rice is currently the lowest quote at $385/ton.

Global rice trade is now forecast at a record 47.9 million tons for 2018, but the composition of suppliers is expected to change from last year. For the seventh consecutive year, India is forecast to be the top exporter, reaching a record 13.0 million tons. With record production and ample stocks, there is no threat of the government curtailing non-basmati exports as it did from 2007 to 2011. Instead, the forecast is for robust basmati and non-basmati exports, primarily to the Asian, African, and Middle Eastern regions.

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