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David Becker

Organic soybean meal prices continue to edge higher and are currently quoted at 630 per metric ton FOB India. There are concerns amongst merchandisers that are helping to keep prices buoyed. First, the weather in India has been wetter than expected and has likely damaged some of the crops. The Jacobsen had expected the total production of soybeans in India for the 2020/2021 season to produce close to 11-million metric tons per year, just a 1-month ago.

All of the soybeans produced in India are non-GMO with a portion that is organic. The Jacobsen is now hearing that as much as 30% of the crop could be damaged which could take the total production down to 7.7 million metric tons per year. It’s hard to believe that the volume of organic soybeans harvested could be less than last years 8.5 million metric ton that was produced in 2019/2020. A more realistic target would likely be 9-million metric tons of Indian soybean production.

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Second, merchandisers are seeing that the new NOP crackdown is beginning to impact the deliveries of organic soybean meal that is brought into the United States. Merchandisers have said that organic soybean meal from Turkey has had issues which are making it more difficult to find organic soybeans and organic soybean meal.

Third, there appears to be an issue with containers in India. While there are plenty of containers that are being shipped from India with organic soybean meal to the US, there are not a lot of containers that are getting shipped back. This is creating a container shortage in India, which will likely have an impact on the organic soybeans and organic soybean meal that is exported to the United States that is expected to arrive in October and November. Merchandisers believe there will be a shortage of soybean meal that arrives in this month which is started to push the price higher.

Organic Broiler Sales Continue to Climb

The issues with organic soybean meal are coming as broiler sales as big-box stores and supermarkets continue to rise. According to The Jacobsen, organic broiler sales increased 15% year over year in August compared to the same period in 2019. For the 6-months ending August 31, since the pandemic has shut-down restaurants across the US, organic broilers sales have increased a robust 28% year over year according to The Jacobsen.

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