Corn and Ethanol Exports Surge During March, Driven by Chinese Purchases

Posted on Tue, 05/04/2021 - 14:39

Trade data released by the Census Bureau shows the U.S. exported roughly 373 million bu. of corn during March, or roughly 25 million bu. more than export inspections data had signaled. Usually, Census data is only around 5 million bu. higher than inspections signal. This marks the largest corn shipments on record for any month back to at least 1992. Corn shipments to China totaled a record 69 million bu. in March. So far this crop year (through March), the U.S. has exported 1.479 billion bu. of corn, which is an 83.3% surge from the 807 million bu. shipped last year at this point.

Ethanol exports to China also soared, jumping from just 18 million liters during February to 183 million liters (48.3 million gallons) in March. The tally was just a tick below the April 2016 record. In the first seven months of 2020-21, the U.S. shipped 287 million liters (75.8 million gallons) of ethanol to China.

Soybean exports of 84 million bu. during March were around 4 million bu. more than export inspections data signaled. Seven months into the crop year, the U.S. has exported 2.07 billion bu. of soybeans, a 860-million-bu. (71.1%) jump from this point last year, according to Census Bureau data.

Wheat exports of 80 million bu. during March were actually a bit lighter than inspections data signaled — an unusual occurrence. So far this crop year, the U.S. has shipped 803 million bu. of wheat, a 1.8% increase from shipments of 789 million bu. at this point last season.