China’s grain inventory ample, sufficient for domestic consumption: NFSRA
Published: Jan 12, 2021 06:00 PM

A farmer runs with a sack of grain on the shoulder during a game in Yaogou Township of Sihong County in Suqian, east China's Jiangsu Province, Dec. 27, 2020. The fun games, held annually in Yaogou Township before the New Year's Day since 2018, consist of eight interesting competitions which are close to farmers' life this year. (Photo by Xu Changliang/Xinhua)

Grain inventories held by businesses across China hit a nearly 15-year-high while corn stocks in Northeast China have tripled compared with the same period last year, the country's National Food and Strategic Reserves Administration (NFSRA) said on Tuesday, offering a fresh assurance to maintain an adequate grain supply in 2021.

China's grain inventories are now kept at a high level, with sufficient wheat and rice stocks to meet demand for 12 months, and inventories of refined grains and oils in large and medium-sized cities sufficient to meet over 20 days of local demand, Qin Yuyun, head of grain reserves at the administration, told a media briefing on Tuesday.

The administration conducted two special investigations into rural households' grain stocks last year and the findings revealed higher-than-average stocks, according to Qin, and the structure of the country's grain inventories has continued to improve, resulting in higher capacity to hedge against market risks.

The NFSRA official also defused woes over the recent uptrend in global grain prices. 

Global grain prices remain at comparatively low levels when putting into perspective their fluctuations over the past decade, according to Qin, citing wheat prices that are currently 31 percent lower than 2012 highs.

Rice prices are now 10 percent lower compared with their 2012 levels, while corn prices are 43 percent lower.

In addition, global wheat stock-to-use ratio is forecast to hit 42 percent in 2021 while the reading for rice is projected at 36 percent this year, an indication of adequate supply, the official said, citing global industry forecast. Global corn use-to-use ratio is expected to remain steady at 25 percent.

On top of that, the successive arrivals of grain imports are seen as shoring up the domestic market. 

Over the first 11 months of 2020, China's cumulative imports of wheat totaled 7.49 million tons, rice imports at 2.23 million tons, while its imports of other alternatives including corn, sorghum and barley amounted to 20.41 million tons, according to Chinese customs data.

Global Times