China sales driving corn market higher


Spurred by strong demand from China, corn prices have pushed to their highest prices in years. That has cheered Iowa crop growers but has forced livestock farmers to figure out how to deal with increased feed costs, Iowa State University ag economists said last week in the fifth session of the Iowa Farm Bureau Economic Summit webinar series.

Years of speculation about big U.S. corn sales to China finally became reality last year as Chinese importers bought $1.2 billion worth of U.S. corn in 2020, an increase of 693% from 2017 levels. China has purchase agreements to nearly double that amount with outstanding sales of more than 11.5 million metric tons for the current marketing year, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) data.

“We’ve talked about that for 30 years. We’ve seen glimmers of it, but this is the ...

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