Soybean import tariffs and a decline in renminbi value have hurt profitability for Chinese soybean crushers. China historically has imported soybeans to crush to satisfy domestic soybean meal needs, but under current market conditions China may be more open toward importing soybean meal instead. Argentina, for instance, decided this month to suspend its export tax on soybean meal in part to accommodate higher meal demand from China and has purchased U.S. soybeans to supplement lower production due to drought.
U.S. crush remained at record volumes last month, and soybean meal exports this season are 18 percent higher than 2016/17 to date. China does not import significant volumes of U.S. soybean meal, however. Our major destinations are Mexico, Canada, Europe, and Southeast Asia.
Chinese soybean production vs. crush
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