Imported soybean already totalizes 5.6 million metric tons

(Photo: a barge of Paraguayan soybean. This country already supplied 4MMT)

Buenos Aires, December 26th. According to the latest RIA Consultores’ weekly report, during November oilseed industry imported 708.865 tons of soybean, to crushing and re-exported as byproducts. This is the second largest volume in the year, after 928,435 tons imported in March.

To November month, soybean imports totalized 5.6 million metric tons, more than three times the volume imported in 2017. The main supplier is Paraguay country with 4 MMT, while the US totalizes 646,000 tons. Another million metric tons appear in the official statistics as “confidential origin”, the RIA’s report remarks.

But despite this huge imports, the crushing industry is not being able to compensate for the lack of raw material, due to the heavy drought in the last summer that cut the harvest around 20 MMT.

In November, industry crushed 3.2 MMT of soybean, 6% below 2017 and accumulates 34.4 MMT from January, 13% below 2017. This is the smallest volume crushed since 2013 when the industry accumulated 32.3 MMT.

As the soybean harvest peak moves away, the industry more relies on the imported soybean. In November 2017, imported soybean represented 4% of the total crushing. This year, the share of the imported soybean grew to  22 percent.

Moreover, the imports surpassed the previous expectations, that were around 4 to 5 million metric tons. If nothing changes during current December, the calendar year would close above 6 MMT of imported soybean.

The following chart, made by RIA Consultores shows the strong imports during the current year.

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