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India August Soymeal exports drop, Iran buying falls
Soymeal demand from Iran tapers off; Local soybean supplies to improve from October
September 6, 2012 5:46 by Reuters
India’s soymeal exports dropped in August to the lowest level in at least two years due to poor demand from Iran and rapidly falling soybean stocks as the season draws to a close, a leading industry body said on Thursday.
India, Asia’s leading supplier of soymeal, exported just 10,005 tonnes of the animal feed in August, down 94 percent from a year earlier, the Solvent Extractors’ Association of India said in a statement.
Soymeal forms the bulk of India’s oilmeal exports. Soybeans are crushed to produce vegetable oils and meal for animal feed.
“Supplies are less and seed prices are so high in the domestic market that it is not profitable to crush and export soymeal,” B.V. Mehta, executive director of SEA told Reuters.
In August, Iran, the top buyer for India’s soymeal since the start of the current fiscal year from April, bought just 4,218 tonnes against 150,761 tonnes in July, the data showed.
“Demand from Iran has just disappeared. Maybe they are getting supplies from other cheaper origins,” Mehta said.
Soybean supplies are expected to improve from October, when the new season begins with the arrival of the fresh harvest.
Indian farmers have so far planted soybeans on 10.69 million hectares compared with 10.31 million hectares a year earlier, farm ministry data showed.
India’s total oilmeal exports fell 59 percent to 120,091 tonnes in August from a year earlier.
Rapeseed meal exports dropped 35 percent to 68,401 tonnes in August from a year earlier. But sales jumped 67 percent from July on increased buying from Indonesia and Thailand.
Last year, China banned imports of India’s rapeseed meal after authorities found some hazardous chemical in shipments from the south Asian nation. India’s vegetable oils industry has called on the government to ask China to lift the ban.
Oilmeal exports between April and August fell 11.76 percent to 1.5 million tonnes, and the trend is likely to continue next month due to lower availability of soybean, Mehta said.
In 2011/12, oilmeal exports rose to 5.52 million tonnes, up 8.9 percent from a year earlier. (Editing by Mayank Bhardwaj and Anthony Barker)