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South Africa lowers maize output forecast

South Africa lowered its 2015 maize output by almost one percent to 9.755 million tonnes on Tuesday, citing the slow pace of deliveries from the field to silos, the government's Crop Estimates Committee (CEC) said. The maize crop in the continent's biggest producer will consist of an estimated 4.65 million tonnes of white maize and 5.1 million tonnes of yellow, the CEC said in its fifth forecast for the 2015 crop.

The CEC estimate beat market expectations of a harvest of 9.57 million tonnes, according to a Reuters poll. South Africa is still expected to reap its lowest staple crop harvest since 2007, which is forecast to be a third less compared to the 2014 crop due to scorching drought. Domestic maize prices have scaled record highs above 3,000 rand ($246) a tonne as a result, putting pressure on food prices and inflation in Africa's most advanced economy.

Copyright Reuters, 2015


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