December 02, 2016 | U.S. Grains Council
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U.S. Grain Prices Present Investment Opportunity for Global Livestock Producers

Global livestock producers are in the enviable position

U.S. Grain Prices Present Investment Opportunity for Global Livestock Producers

As corn harvest winds down in the United States, global livestock producers are in the enviable position of being able to both take advantage of competitive feed grain prices and invest in the future growth of their businesses.

Back in 2012, as corn prices hovered around $8 per bushel, many poultry, swine and dairy producers rode out the high prices, buying one cargo of corn at a time while waiting and hoping for the market to improve.

But world livestock producers are once again set to benefit from the strength and ingenuity of U.S. farmers, who have produced four harvests exceeding 350 million metric tons per year. The 2016 crop is currently projected at 386 million metric tons.

The result has been a tremendous growth in global corn ending stocks and a dramatic decline in the price of corn that translates to savings for overseas companies.

For example, a poultry company importing 25,000 metric tons of corn per month in 2012 would have paid nearly $8 million each month for corn, which makes up 60 percent of its feed costs. In 2016, that same producer can receive the same quantity of corn for less than $3.5 million per month, saving the company more than $4.5 million per month or $54 million per year in feed costs.

This dramatic savings in the cost of the primary input for the global feed industry - combined with projections for a continued abundance of corn, as highlighted by record global ending stocks - results in a very favorable buyer's market.

U.S. farmers have shown their ability to rise to the challenge and produce an abundance of corn to meet market needs, and low prices and significant cost savings all lead to conditions that are favorable for massive growth in the global livestock industry.

U.S. Grains Council staff and consultants globally have been aggressively promoting U.S. grain sales to international buyers in recent months, which is helping drive increased export sales seen in recent months.

The message to buyers is clear: now is the time to both buy and to invest in your future.

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