World wheat production is likely to drop to 662m tonnes this year, 34m tonnes below last year’s record, according to the International Grains Council.

Its latest forecast was 3m tonnes lower than last month, due to reduced production in the Black Sea region.

Ending stocks were set to drop by 3m tonnes as well, to 180m tonnes – 17m tonnes lower than last year.

Drought in the USA and Ukraine led the IGC to slash its maize estimate by 26m tonnes, to 838m tonnes – 37m tonnes below last year.

“Exportable supplies in the US and Ukraine have tightened and, while the next crops in Brazil, Argentina and South Africa may be large, harvests are still several months away,” it said.

However, consumption would drop for the first time since 1993/94, meaning ending stocks would only be 14m tonnes down, at 120m tonnes – the lowest level for six years.

A large South American soyabean crop would compensate for disappointing American production, putting total global soya production at 255m tonnes – 7% up, year-on-year.

“Expanding feed demand in China will continue to shape world soyabean trade, forecast at a record 94m tonnes, up 2% on the year.”

Canada was also expected a record oilseed rape crop, putting global rapeseed production close to the 2009/10 record at 60.6m tonnes.

“Larger shipments to the EU and China are set to boost world rapeseed trade by 5%, to 12.5m tonnes.”

London wheat futures remained firm on Thursday (23 August), at about £206/t for November, with Paris rapeseed futures close to contract highs at around €520/t (£412/t).