China imported 98 MMT of soybeans last year and was projected to reach 100 MMT this year. As China shifted to Brazilian soybeans, it was expected that at some point Brazil would run out and China would be forced to buy U.S. soybeans.
However, according to an executive with one of the largest crushers in China, that won’t necessarily be the case. As quoted by Reuters, Mu Yan Kui noted that during the 80s the U.S. promoted the use of 20 percent soybeans in feed rations, far above the 12 percent recommended for hogs. Cutting soybean meal from 20 to 12 percent in feed rations could result in a 27 MMT reduction in soybean imports needs. To put that number in perspective, U.S. soybean exports in the 2017/18 sales year totaled 57.5 MMT.
United States soybean exports to China