Rice Outlook, June 2019 (summary)
U.S. 2019/20 Rice Production Forecast Lowered 9 Percent to 198.1 Million Cwt
There were several revisions this month to the 2019/20 U.S. rice balance sheet. On the supply side, the production forecast was lowered 9 percent to 198.1 million cwt because of a lower harvested area estimate. The area reduction was caused by excessive rainfall in much of the South that delayed plantings and is expected to result in prevented plantings. Long-grain rice accounted for all of the area reduction. In addition, the 2019/20 import forecast was raised 1.2 million cwt to a record 29.2 million cwt based on recent purchases from China by Puerto Rico and on a smaller U.S. supply forecast. The 2019/20 carryin was increased 3.7 million cwt to 57.3 million cwt because of revisions in the 2018/19 balance sheet. On the use side, total domestic and residual use was lowered 7.0 million cwt to 133.0 million cwt, and exports lowered 1.0 million cwt to 100.0 million cwt. On balance, these revisions resulted in a 5-percent reduction in the 2019/20 total supply forecast to 284.6 million cwt. The season-average farm price forecasts for both classes of rice were raised because of the reduced supply forecast.
There were revisions to the 2018/19 balance sheet this month as well. First, total imports were increased 0.7 million cwt to 28.7 million cwt based on a recent shipment of medium- and short-grain rice from China to Puerto Rico. On the use side, the 2018/19 export forecast was lowered 3.0 million cwt to 90.0 million cwt based on shipment pace through May and expectations that some sales made in 2018/19 will be shipped in the 2019/20 market year. Export forecasts were lowered for both classes of rice.
In the global rice market, the 2019/20 production forecast was lowered 1.5 million tons to 497.6 million tons because of lower crop forecasts for North Korea, Thailand, and the United States. These three reductions were partially offset by increased production forecasts for Egypt, EU, and Madagascar. The 2020 global trade forecast was lowered 0.4 million tons to 47.5 million tons, with export forecasts lowered for India, Burma, and the United States, but raised for Brazil and China. Export prices for Thailand and Vietnam increased slightly over the past month while those for the United States dropped.