France Becomes Primary Destination for Indian Soybean Meal
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India’s market year 2023/2024 Oil Meal production is forecast to remain flat at 20 MMT owing to steady domestic demand from India’s domestic livestock industry and regional export competitiveness. However, continued fluctuation in global Oilseed prices may constrain crop arrivals for domestic crushing. In the first half of MY 2022/2023, significant carryover stocks led to high Rapeseed mustard and Soybean crush rates, which fell in March 2023 due to uneven crush margins and reduced parity.
A lack of price discovery and limited hedging options have created market uncertainty for Oilseed traders, who are cautious and operate on tight crush margins. Likewise, the current MY’s Oil Meal production is revised slightly lower to 19.8 MMT, which aligns with revised Soybean and Rapeseed-mustard production estimates and reduced demand from crushers in the latter half of 2023. In recent years, 75 percent of India’s Oilseed supply has been domestically crushed. Oil Meals are primarily used for animal feed with small quantities for food use. However, specific end-use allocations vary based on protein content, available domestic supplies, and export demand.
The forecasted year’s total Meal consumption will rise to 18.3 MMT, two percent above the current MY estimate. Animal feed proteins will remain a significant component of total Oil Meal consumption in the year, including 6.7 MMT of Soybean Meal and 4.1 MMT of cottonseed Meal.
Additionally, Rapeseed, peanut, and sunflower seed Meals are estimated at 4.7, 1.6, and 0.82 MMT, respectively, and are used in a range of livestock feed mixes and poultry feeds. Regarding Soybean Meal equivalent (SME), the protein Meal consumption for feed use is expected to grow 2.6 percent, from 15.2 MMT in the current year to 15.6 MMT in the forecast year.
India’s organized feed industry primarily uses Soybean Meal and occasionally peanut, sunflower seed, and Rapeseed Meals for specialized livestock operations. In addition to animal feed, Oil Meals are increasingly used in particular food and healthcare products, including low-cost, high-protein supplements. Processed Meals, mostly Soybean, are also widely used as texturized protein (chunks, flakes, and nuggets) to fortify other food products (e.g., wheat flour, biscuits, etc.) or for protein isolate extraction.
Oil Meal Trade in India
Assuming normal market conditions, Indian Oil Meal exports in MY 2022/2023 are forecast to be 1.9 MMT, a 32 percent drop from the current year’s estimated 2.8 million metric tons. This figure assumes market course correction following a substantial increase in Oil Meal exports estimated in the current MY and increased diversion of Oil Meal stocks for domestic feed industries. Out-year exports will mainly include 1.1 MMT of Rapeseed Meal and 750,000 MT of Soybean Meal. Oil Meal imports will remain limited at 545,000 metric tons accounting for stabilized domestic Meal prices.
In the first half of MY 2022-2023, India’s primary Oil Meal exports more than tripled due to strong demand from Southeast Asian countries. This increase primarily occurred in Soybean and Rapeseed Meal through improved price parity against other competing origins, including South American and U.S.-origin Soybean Meals. Indian Soybean, peanut, and Rapeseed Meal exports will remain steady through the second half of the current MY due to consistent regional demand and tighter global Meal stocks. In MY 2021/2022, Nepal, France, and the United States were the primary export destinations for Indian Soybean Meal. South Korea, Bangladesh, and Thailand were the top importers of Indian Rapeseed Meal.
According to AgFlow data, India imported 1.2 million tons of Vegetable Oil in June 2023. Key suppliers were Indonesia (0.5 million tons), Argentina (0.4 million tons), and Malaysia (0.24 million tons).
Other sources: USDA
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