Tight Corn Supply Affecting Market

By Sean Broderick | September 23, 2013

Sept. 3—As Labor Day approached, the old crop corn supply was about as tight as it was last year at that time, and that affected both the demand and price of DDGS. Overseas buyers have continued buying to keep their pipelines full, but the convergence of old and new crop is keeping them cautious about having too much in the pipeline. Domestic buyers are only buying what they need on the very nearby, as their logistics are not as elongated as those of the overseas buyers.

This year’s pace of exports to China will more than likely surpass the record amount of tons in 2010 of around 2.5 million metric tons. Container sales have been strong but there has been a fairly good amount of bulk vessels so far this summer and into the fall. Container supply will be an issue though, as soybeans and corn compete with DDGS for a finite pool of containers.

Margins for domestic feeders have been pretty tough this year and, although things look marginally better for hogs and poultry, cattle and dairies continue to struggle.  Lower corn prices will help them all, but it’s still possible they will continue to buy hand-to-mouth until the market breaks. DDGS prices will be affected by that process but there has been a pretty significant amount of October, November and December product traded at prices of 100 to 105 percent of Chicago Board of Trade corn. This should bode well for the plant margins going ahead if they get normal harvest basis levels, whatever normal is.