This week there were no major data releases in the South African agricultural market. The weaker Rand against the US Dollar, coupled with higher Chicago grain prices provided support to the domestic grain and oilseed market, thus overshadowing the bearish sentiment that stemmed from expectations of large supplies in the 2018/19 marketing year.
The notable gains were on white and yellow maize with spot prices, with each respectively up by 3 percent from last week. Sunflower seed and wheat prices were up by 2 percent and a percentage point from last week’s average prices. Soybean price was marginally up from the previous week. Aside from price movements, the harvest process has been completed in most summer crop areas. This is with the exception of maize, which is behind normal schedule due to a late start of the season on the back of dryness between late last year and early 2018.
The favourable weather conditions in the past couple of weeks provided conducive conditions for the harvest process. The progress is reflected in the volumes of maize delivered to commercial silos in the past couple of weeks. In the first week of this month, maize producer deliveries amounted to 395 220 tonnes. About 60 percent of this was white maize, with 40 percent being yellow maize.
This placed South Africa’s 2018/19 maize marketing year producer deliveries at 8.3 million tonnes, which equates to 63 percent of the estimated harvest of 13.2 million tonnes. Yellow maize accounts for 51 percent of overall maize deliveries, with white maize accounting for 49 percent. The yields in areas that have harvested largely varied between average and above average, which is somewhat in line with market expectations. More maize will be delivered in the coming weeks. As flagged in the introductory section, this had minimal impact on maize prices.
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