Nuts

Peanuts: acreage smaller than expected

July 5, 2022 9:30 AM, Der AUDITOR
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ATLANTA/NEW DELHI. This year's acreage in the USA is likely to be significantly smaller than the USDA initially expected. The Peanut Grower also reports sluggish trading activities and declining exports.

Shelling companies delay purchases

Geopolitical uncertainties also have an influence on the peanut market. According to the experts at The Peanut Grower, the uncertain economic situation and questions about the 2022 crop in the USA are causing shelling companies to delay their purchases. The market is very quiet and only small transactions are taking place. The outlook for the new crop is not good either; industry experts estimate that the area sown will be up to 10% less than last year, as many farmers have switched to more profitable agricultural products such as cotton or corn. The USDA's acreage estimates will probably have to be revised, as The Peanut Grower reports - the decline here was initially estimated at only 1-2.5%. Both buyers and sellers are therefore currently in wait-and-see mode, closely monitoring weather developments and the progress of the new crop before taking action.

Summer and salmonella dampen purchases

For the US domestic market, the USDA reports a decline in peanut consumption, both for the nuts as a primary product and in processed form in confectionery and peanut butter. For example, peanut butter consumption was down 3.3% in April 2022 compared to the same month last year, with confectionery down 0.4% and snacks down 5.2%. According to The Peanut Grower, a nationwide recall for salmonella and the summer travel season contributed to this.

On the export market, things look only slightly better. Here, the USDA indicates a decline of 18.61% to 322,679 mt for the period January-March 2022 compared to the same period last year. The largest buyer remains Mexico (+5.83% to 32,824 mt), followed by Canada (+2.62% to 30,890 mt). Other important buyers were the Netherlands, Japan and the UK. China reduced its purchases of US peanuts by almost 60% to only 23,397 mt; although the country needs large quantities for the production of peanut oil, the high US prices cause Chinese buyers to increasingly stock up in India.

Monsoon will have an impact on prices

Things are not looking rosy for Indian peanuts either at the moment and prices have fallen since last week. Production in Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh in particular is significantly lower than hoped. A severe fungal infestation had led to crop failures here. However, the state governments have some stocks, so market players expect that sufficient goods will be available for the time being. The monsoon is currently still weaker than expected, but as soon as it arrives with full intensity, price corrections are likely. Indian peanuts, bold, 40-50 in non-EU quality are currently trading at USD 1,295/mt FOB India.

Peanuts, with skin

Type

USD/mt

Bold, 40-50

1,295

Bold, 50-60

1,260

Bold, 60-70

1,245

Java, 50-60

1,380

Java, 60-70

1,310

Java, 70-80

1,300

FOB India, non-EU quality

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price chart, peanuts, with skin, 40/50, Bold, India
price chart peanuts, with skin, 50/60, Java, India
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