China lowers forecast for corn output, media reports
China has lowered its forecasts for its corn output, according to news agency Xinhua Net.
The news agency reported that China’s output will now be 210 million tonnes in the 2017/18 crop year, down 2.37 million tonnes from predictions made last month.
According to Xinhua, a committee from the Ministry of Agriculture ( MOA) also raised forecasts on industrial consumption of corn by 1.05 million tonnes to 61.3 million tonnes as a recent government plan to encourage the use of bioethanol gasoline will increase demand.
Years of support for corn farmers have left China with a substantial stockpile. The country’s corn output stood at around 220 million tonnes last year, while stocks amounted to 230 million tonnes.
To help make use of the excess stock, China announced a plan in September for nationwide use of bioethanol gasoline by 2020.
According to Xinhua, the country launched corn-to-ethanol pilot programmes in 2004 as part of efforts to cut emissions and advance new energy. The country is the world’s third-largest bioethanol producer, using nearly 2.6 million tonnes a year.
The latest plan will help China’s corn market to gradually restore to a supply-demand balance in three to five years.