Tuesday 17 April 2012
80% jump in cattle feed imports
Japan's farm ministry said on Friday it plans to buy 77.7 percent more foreign wheat for animal feed in the year starting on April 1 than in the current year.
It revised up its annual target volume this year to reflect users' need for an alternative to costly corn.
Corn is usually the main ingredient in Japan's compound feed.
The ministry said it plans to buy 764,000 tonnes of foreign wheat and 1.288 million tonnes of foreign barley for animal feed use in 2012/13, compared with its 2011/12 targets of 430,000 tonnes of wheat and 1.41 million tonnes for barley.
In October, the ministry revised up its import target of feed wheat by 43 percent from the initial 2011/12 volume of 300,000 tonnes.
The target for feed barley imports remained unchanged.
Japan keeps a tight grip on imports of wheat and barley to protect local farmers and sets an import target for both grains for use in animal feed annually to buy them in a tender under a system to reflect the needs of end-users.
Under the ministry's simultaneous buy and sell (SBS) system, feed makers can negotiate the origin, price and quantity of grain with trading companies prior to jointly submitting bids to the government.
(Reporting by Risa Maeda; Editing by Michael Watson).
Source: Argentine Beef Packers S.A.
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