Another week, another record U.S. corn purchase from China. Last Thursday, China bought 1.937 million metric tons (MMT) or 76.1 million bushels of new-crop corn. This edges out the previous record of 1.762 MMT set just two weeks previously. China’s purchases of new-crop U.S. corn will soon exceed 400 million bushels—the largest new-crop export sales number at this time of year since 1996.
China has been ramping up purchases as it deals with all-time high domestic pricing fueled by lower-than-anticipated reserves and potential crop problems. The country has dealt with flooding, most notably in the south, prompting crop concerns. China is virtually self-sufficient when it comes to corn, but any yield loss may lead to some purchases to hedge against supply issues.