Market Outlook

Rice Outlook: March 2021


India’s 2021 Rice Export Forecast Raised to a
Record 15.5 Million Tons

There were no revisions this month to the U.S. 2020/21 rice balance sheet. Production remains estimated at 227.6 million hundredweight (cwt), up 23 percent from a year earlier, mostly due to expanded area. Imports remain forecast at 36.2 million cwt, down 3 percent from the year-earlier record but still the second highest on record. Exports remain forecast at 93.0 million cwt, down more than 1 percent from a year earlier, with milled rice accounting for all of the expected decline. Ending stocks remain forecast at 39.4 million cwt, up almost 38 percent from the year-earlier abnormally low level. Season-average farm price (SAFP) forecasts were raised this month for both long-grain and combined southern medium- and short-grain rice, largely based on higher-than-expected monthly NASS-reported prices through January. These revisions raised the all-rice SAFP 20 cents to $13.60 per cwt.

In the 2020/21 global rice market, world production was raised 0.4 million tons to a record 504.4 million tons (milled basis), up more than 1 percent from a year earlier. This month, production forecasts were raised for Burma and India, but lowered for Australia, Bangladesh, and the Dominican Republic. Global consumption and residual use for 2020/21 was raised 0.5 million tons to a record 504.7 million. Global ending stocks were lowered 0.3 million tons to 177.8 million, down 0.3 million from the year-earlier record and the first decline since 2006/07. This month, ending stocks forecasts were lowered for Bangladesh but raised for China and India. 

Global rice trade in calendar year 2021 remains forecast at 46.1 million tons, unchanged from the previous forecast but up nearly 3 percent from a year earlier. This month, 2021 export forecasts were raised for Argentina and India but lowered for Brazil and Thailand. On the 2021 import side, forecasts were raised for Australia, China, Somalia, and Togo but lowered for Cameroon. Price quotes for Thailand’s nonaromatic rice exports dropped 6-7 percent over the past month, mostly due to an improved supply situation and continued uncompetitive prices. Vietnam’s prices dropped about 1 percent over the past month as supplies from its main spring crop began entering the market. Price quotes for Burma and India were unchanged over the past month, while Pakistan’s dropped slightly. Price quotes from South American exporters were unchanged from a month earlier.



See the Rice Outlook.