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Growing premium for higher protein wheat in Australia

Grains Market Focus: A Platts news and analysis feature

Assessment Rationale

November 11, 2016 - S&P Global Platts assessed APW higher by $0.50/mt at $203.50/mt FOB WA November 11, below the best selling indication heard at $205/mt and above the highest bid heard at $202/mt. The lowest indicative offer collected on the day was at $203/mt, down $2/mt from the next best sell indication, and was therefore not deemed repeatable.

Market Commentary

November 11, 2016 - The Korea Flour Mills Industrial Association, through SajDongahone flour mill, November 11 bought a total of 25,000 mt of Australian wheat for May shipment via an open tender. The Korean Australian standard white or noodle blend was awarded at $219/mt, up $6/mt from the November 4 level, on the back of firmer Australian noodle wheat grade in Australia.

In the same tender, 4,200 mt of Australian Hard wheat with minimum 11.5% protein was concluded at $238/mt, up $15/mt from a week ago, reflecting the growing premium for higher protein wheat in Australia. The initial volume sought for AH2 was 6,500 mt but sources said high prices led to the volume reduction.

On the crop harvesting front, CBH, the largest bulk handler in Western Australia, reported harvesting in northern Western Australia including Kwinana and Geraldton to be ramping up, with Kwinana receiving 13% of the grain crop, while Geraldton received 33% at their receival sites.

Meanwhile, harvesting in the southern part of Western Australia state was slowly building momentum although some wheat areas such as Esperance are still green and require hotter and drier temperate for harvesting. Albany, however, faces grain quality issues, due to frost occurrences at the end of growing season.

Traders said recent farmers updates pointed to very limited receivals of wheat above 10.5% protein, and this could be widening the premium for AH2 or higher protein wheat.

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