01.07.2010 12:06

Argentina Soy Crush Down Sharply As More Beans Exported

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01.07.2010 12:06

Argentina's soybean crush from January through April was down sharply on the year despite the bumper crop grown this season as more of the crop is being shipped as beans.

The amount of soybeans crushed into oil and meal was down over 13% on the year from January through April, according to the Buenos Aires Cereals Exchange.

Soybean production this year was a record 55 million tons, up over 70% from last season's drought-battered crop.

But exporters are shipping a larger share of the crop as raw beans rather than oil and meal, due in part to a trade spat with China. China is historically the leading market for Argentine soyoil.

In April, China blocked Argentine soyoil imports citing the failure to meet purity standards, but the move is widely seen as retaliation against Argentina's trade protectionism against Chinese goods.

Still, soybean exports surged in April, with over 1.8 million tons shipped, according to the national agricultural sanitation service Senasa. That more than doubled the amount of exports from a year earlier. China bought over 80% of Argentina's soybean exports during the first quarter.

Meanwhile, grain and grain derivative exports during May were up 41% on the year, with the volume shipped up 65% and prices down 14% on the year, the exchange said.

Source: CME Group

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