BEIJING: China’s 2021 corn output is forecast to rise 4.3% from the previous year to 272 million tonnes, a government think tank said on Friday, in the first estimate by an official agency for the crop to be harvested later this year.
Corn acreage in 2021 is expected to increase 3.3% from the previous year to 42.63 million hectares (105.3 million acres), China National Grain & Oils Information Center (CNGOIC) also said in a statement published on its official WeChat account.
The estimates come after China’s domestic corn prices hit record highs amid tighter supplies of the grain.
China has cut corn acreage in recent years to reduce state stockpiles and boost output of other crops like soybeans.
But it said earlier this year that corn acreage would increase in 2021 as temporary reserves of corn had dwindled, while typhoons hurt output in 2020.
“Corn prices have risen so significantly, while corn is a high-yield crop. Of course farmers would increase acreage to increase their income,” said Meng Jinhui, a senior analyst with Shengda Futures.
“The national policy is also shifting. Incentives on soybeans are not as (strong) as a couple years ago,” Meng said.
The forecasts follow China’s reiteration in a cabinet meeting on Thursday of its policy to boost grain security.
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