Projected global 2013/2014 corn use has been increased 100 million bushels in December, split evenly between fuel ethanol and exports, according to the latest U.S. Department of Agriculture feed outlook.

Margins have been very favorable for ethanol mills, with higher ethanol and distillers' dried grains prices on the revenue side combined with lower corn prices on the input side. Exports have benefited from lower corn prices and increased global consumption. Increases in use have been offset slightly by a 5-million-bushel increase in projected imports.

Production and feed and residual are unchanged. Projected carryout is tighter by 95 million bushels, at 1.8 billion bushels, but still double last season's estimate of 824 million bushels, according to the USDA. The 2013/2014 season-average farm price for corn is projected 10 cents lower at the midpoint of $4.40 per bushel, with the range narrowed to $4.05 to $4.75 per bushel based on prices reported to date.


World coarse grain production for 2013/2014 has been projected higher in December, led by increases for Canadian corn and barley, Australian barley, and Ukrainian corn. Global coarse grain use prospects increase slightly more than production increases, trimming expected global ending stocks.

U.S. feed grain supply estimates for 2013/2014 changed little in December, as projected corn imports were bumped up 5 million bushels, largely due to increased Canadian production forecasts, said the USDA. U.S. feed grain production is unchanged at 371.5 million metric tons, 30 percent higher than 2012/2013. Projected supplies are 398.1 million metric tons, up 24 percent from 2012/2013.

Forecast U.S. feed grain use is up 2.5 million metric tons at 349.4 million metric tons, on higher corn use for ethanol and exports. This pushes total use up 18 percent from 2012/2013. The higher projected use leaves December's carryout down 2.4 million metric tons at 48.6 million metric tons, but still more than twice the 23.6-million-metric-ton ending stocks level estimated for 2012/2013.