USDA forecasts higher agriculture trade exports
USDA boosted its estimated agricultural trade export forecast for 2006 to a
record $67 billion - $2.5 billion above its February estimates. Exports will
continue to expand most in East Asia, Canada, and Mexico. Exports are forecast
lower for Southeast Asia and the EU-25, and remain largely unchanged for the
A 5-million-ton increase in corn and sorghum shipments
and higher unit values raise coarse grain exports to $6.5 billion. US corn faces
less competition from China and Argentina, and prices are rising due to strong
domestic demand for animal feed and ethanol production.
Sorghum exports are raised due to strong feed grain
demand from Mexico. Wheat export volume is lower, but higher unit values leave
export value unchanged.
Compared with 2005, the export outlook reflects a sharp
increase for horticultural products, mostly due to strong foreign demand and
higher prices for fruits and tree nuts. Coarse grains are up due to large
domestic crops, reduced foreign competition, and higher unit prices.
Higher values for corn and soybeans are supported by
strength in domestic demand for animal feeds and biofuel production. Beef
exports are up, with increased sales to Canada and Mexico.
Forecast fiscal 2006 agricultural imports are raised to a
record $65 billion, up 13% from 2005 and continuing the faster pace that began
Fresh produce, wine, and beer continue to drive much of the growth, and
vegetable oils and live cattle are also sharply higher. Beef imports are flat
with more cattle crossing the border. Tropical products, especially rubber,
coffee, and sugar, are up although their share of imports has fallen over the
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