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USDA: FY 2023 Ag Exports Forecast Lower

Decrease is primarily driven by lower exports of cotton, beef and sorghum

Martin Damboldt | PEXELS
Martin Damboldt | PEXELS

The latest USDA Outlook for U.S. Agricultural Trade says U.S. agricultural exports in fiscal year (FY) 2023 are projected at $193.5 billion, down $2.5 billion from the revised forecast for FY 2022.

Decrease in cotton, beef, sorghum; increase in soybeans, horticultural products

This decrease is primarily driven by lower exports of cotton, beef and sorghum that are partially offset by higher exports of soybeans and horticultural products.

  • Cotton exports are forecast down $1.8 billion due to drought-slashed exportable volumes
  • Beef exports are forecast down $1.1 billion due to tight U.S. supplies
  • Overall livestock, poultry and dairy exports are projected at $41.1 billion, down $1.5 billion
  • Sorghum exports are forecast at $2.0 billion, down $700 million, on sharply lower exportable supplies.
  • Total grain and feed exports are forecast down $1.3 billion to $46.5 billion; in addition to sorghum, wheat exports are forecast down $300 million on lower unit values
  • Soybean exports are forecast up $2.2 billion to a record $35.2 billion on higher prices
  • Horticulture exports are raised $400 million to $39.5 billion as higher exports of fresh and processed fruits and vegetables more than offset a decline in tree nut exports
  • Ethanol exports are unchanged at $4.2 billion

USDA released its August Crop Production report on August 12 and the survey-based report has farmers indicating corn yields will reach 175.4 bushels/acre and soybean yields at a record 51.9 bushels/acre in 2022.

Unchanged forecasts for Chinese, Canadian, Mexican exports

Agricultural exports to China are forecast at $36.0 billion, unchanged from FY 2022, as higher soybean exports offset lower cotton and sorghum prospects.

Agricultural exports to Canada and Mexico are forecast at $28.5 billion each, also unchanged from FY 2022.

Total agricultural imports are expected to increase

For FY 2022, the export estimate of a record $196.0 billion represents an increase of $5.0 billion from May’s projection, mainly due to increases in livestock, poultry and dairy exports.

In FY 2023, total agricultural imports are expected to increase $5.0 billion above the FY 2022 forecast — to $197.0 billion — due to higher imports of grains and feed products, horticultural products, and sugar and tropical products.

Total imports in FY 2022 are expected to be $11.5 billion more than the May forecast and $28.7 billion more than FY 2021.

If realized, the 18% jump in import values in FY 2022 would be the largest year-over-year percentage increase since FY 2011.

The historically large increase from FY 2021 to FY 2022 is a product of the unwavering upward trend of import volumes in the face of increasing unit values for nearly every agricultural import product group.

Read the full report.

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