Vietnam Emerges as the Fastest Growing Maize Importer

Cereals April 11, 2018
Author: Sergey Avramenko
Head of Global Markets Research Team

IndexBox has just published a new report "World: Maize - Market Report - Analysis And Forecast To 2025". Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

All of the Main Production Countries Increased Their Output

The U.S. was the key world maize producing country with an output of about 402M tonnes in 2016, which accounted for 36% of total global output. The other major producers were China (21%), Brazil (9%) and Ukraine (3%).

In the U.S., production levels increased by 2.2% annually from 2007 to 2016, however, it dropped by 13% in 2012 by reason of unusually hot year, which damaged the harvest. However, the following year the volume of production increased, having reached the maximum recorded volume since 2007 and has continued its growth over the following years.

The other major producing countries also displayed notable growth of maize output in physical terms. From 2007-2016 annual growth rates were especially high in Ukraine (+18.9%),Brazil (+7.6%) and China (+5.0%).

Approx. 11% of Global Maize Output Is Exported

Maize is a widely traded commodity, with the share of export in total global output being about 11% in 2016. High trade intensity is determined mainly by the substantial distances between the main maize producing countries and consuming countries.

The U.S., Argentina, Brazil and Ukraine Constitute Major Global Maize Exporters

In 2016, the volume of global exports totaled 148.5M tonnes, which equaled to $28.5B. In physical terms, it indicated a steady increase from 2007 to 2016. In value terms, global maize exports indicated mixed trend pattern: after peaking in 2012, it started to decline gradually over the next three years, stabilizing only in 2016.

The U.S. (56M tonnes), Argentina (24.5M tonnes), Brazil (21.9M tonnes) and Ukraine (12.2M tonnes) were the main global suppliers of maize in 2016, with a combined share of 77% of global exports. From 2007 to 2016, Ukraine (+32.7% per year) remains the fastest growing exporter. 

Exports from Argentina and Brazil grew at more moderate average annual rates of +5.6% and +8.0%, respectively. Meanwhile, despite soaring from 2014-2016, exports from the U.S. only mirrored its outset level. By contrast, albeit standing among the largest global producers of maize, China did not export much of its production, meaning that it was consumed domestically.

Vietnam Emerged as the Fastest Growing Maize Importer

The value of global imports totaled $30.5B in 2016. Imports dynamics was generally in line with exports: these trade flows globally complement each other. 

In 2016, Japan (15.3M tonnes), Mexico (14.1M tonnes), South Korea (9.8M tonnes), Vietnam (8.2M tonnes), Egypt (6.9M tonnes), Spain (6.0M tonnes) andColombia (4.6M tonnes) were the leading markets for maize imports, together making up 51% of global imports. 

Amongst the major importing countries Vietnam had the highest growth rates of imports, with a CAGR of +27.7%, followed by Mexico (+6.6%), Egypt (+4.9%), Colombia (+3.6%) and South Korea (+1.5%). While Vietnam significantly strengthened its position in terms of the global imports from being practically absend in 2007 to 7% in 2016, the share of Japan and Spaindeclined over the period under review. The shares of the other countries remained relatively stable throughout the analyzed period.

Global Consumption of Maize Went Up Over the Last Nine Years

The global maize market rose by 6% to 1.1B tonnes in 2016. From 2007 to 2016, the global maize market indicated an upward trend. However, in wholesales prices, the market roller-coasted over the last nine years due to fluctuations in prices, finally amounting to $254.8B.

The U.S. and China Were the Major Consumers of Maize

The countries with the highest consumption were the U.S. (31% of global consumption) and China (21%); the other countries, namely Brazil (7%), Mexico (4%), Ukraine (3%), India (2%), and Indonesia (2%) lagged behind in terms of maize consumption.

In China, maize consumption increased robustly at an average annual rate of +5.6% from 2007-2016, while in the U.S. the growth was more moderate (+2.6% per year). However, the highest annual growth rates of maize consumption from 2007 to 2016 were recorded in Ukraine, with +20.7% growth. Following significant consumtion growth rates, Ukraine strengthened its share in terms of the global consumption from 1% in 2007 to 3% in 2016. China and Brazil also increased their share in total consumption at the same extent. By contrast, share of the U.S. declined by 3 percentage points over the period under review.

Amongst the leading consuming countries high levels of per capita consumption levels were recorded in the U.S. (1,079 kg/year in 2016) and Ukraine (787 kg/year) which were significantly higher than the world average of 153 kg/year. In Ukraine, the growth of per capita consumption (+20.7% per year) was the most notable amongst the leaders.

Maize Market Volume Is Expected to Overcome 1.3B Tonnes in 2025

Maize is one of the most popular cereal grains in the world and is used both for animal feed and for manufacturing of various food products. Maize output has been growing over the past few years, leading to surplus grain stocks in some countries, which, in turn, led to a reduction of prices. It is expected that output will continue to grow in the medium term, however, lower prices will force a number of producers to switch to production of other crops. Nevertheless, due to the population growth along with the increasing demand for food products, including the global increase of meat production, the consumption of maize will continue to grow. 

Therefore, the market is expected to grow with a projected CAGR of +1.8% for the nine-year period from 2016 to 2025, which is foreacasted to lead the market volume to 1.32B tonnes by the end of 2025.

Global Production of Maize Peaked at 1.1B Tonnes

Production of maize reached 1.1B tonnes in 2016, with a positive dynamics over the last few years. In 2012 there was observed slight mitigation of production volume due to fall of production in the main producing country – the U.S. It was due to unusually hot and dry year, which was the reason of decline in yield.

Do you want to know more about global maize market? Get the latest trends and insight from our report. It includes a wide range of statistics on

  • maize market share
  • maize prices
  • maize industry
  • maize sales
  • maize import
  • maize export
  • maize market forecast
  • maize price forecast
  • key maize producers

Source: World: Maize - Market Report. Analysis And Forecast To 2025