Brazil’s record soybean crop this season will allow the nation to boost exports to China while also increasing domestic soybean processing, according to oilseed lobby Abiove.
Abiove chief Andre Nassar said shipments would confirm the nation’s status as a key provider of food staples to China just before a visit to Beijing by Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on 26 March.
He told Reuters that he hoped upcoming meetings involving representatives from both countries would open up a new market for Brazilian-made products like soymeal, which China uses as livestock feed.
Brazil is the world’s largest producer and exporter of soybeans. In 2023, it will harvest around 150 million tonnes on the back of higher yields and expanded cultivation.
China’s total soybean imports in 2022 fell for the second consecutive year to around 91 million tonnes, with Brazil accounting for 54.4 million tonnes. The 6% drop was due to weaker demand from China’s meat industry and problems with Brazil’s own soy crop, which was hit by drought last year.
Demand has picked up, however, with record soybean imports by China in the first two months of 2023.