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Global Chickpea, Field Peas Market Weekly Review

Abhijeet Banerjee
Abhijeet Banerjee

Trade interest remains better in global chickpea markets currently. Although from pricing perspective there were limited fluctuations during the recently ended week, yet trade interest was healthy amid better price outlook for upcoming months. Average price expectations have increased in global chickpeas markets amid report of lower area coverage in Argentina this year. Estimates for shortage of Kabuli Chana in medium to long term and tight supply side in India and Mexico are also the key factors in keeping long term global price outlook better. Area of medium caliber chickpea has decreased in Canada and US this year. The USDA and Statistics Canada have pegged combined area at 602,000 acres, down from 843,000 last year and the record 1.3 million sown in 2018.

Now concerns are emerging about problems related to spreading disease in parts of western Canada and the northern United States. This has forced processors and exporters to expect lower average yields. Concerns are rife that planted area in Montana, North Dakota and western Canada could fall much above earlier expectations, in case disease problems intensify. As expected, land in chickpeas in both Canada and the United States is down sharply from last year, with the USDA and Statistics Canada pegging combined area at 602,000 acres, versus 843,000 last year and the record 1.3 million acres sown in 2018. A return to average yields would see production in Canada drop from 251,700 to 197,000 metric tons from 297,800 acres, while output in the U.S. would fall from around 283,000 to just over 199,000 MT from 304,000 acres.

Survey reports convey that Canadian Chickpeas ending stocks remain relatively high and the country may finish the marketing year with 155,000 MT on hand, up from 100,000, as reported during commencement of the current marketing year. On the other hand the end stocks in the United States are expected to fall from 260,000 to 219,000 MT. Lower end stocks are due to drop in production estimates, resulting after the detection of ascochyta blight in few growing regions. In the week ended recently, spot prices of old and new crop of 9mm Kabuli chickpeas have gone higher in recent week in markets of Canada as well as United States.

Meanwhile trading was limited in world field pea markets with average trade values dropping in some of the grades. Limited trade activity was noted throughout the week as market participants lacked transparency regarding demand prospects for medium and longer term. Above average monsoon rains and increased tension between the United States and China have raised some doubts over future demand outlook peas and other pulses. Important to note the US has already announced that the country has curbed chances for a second part of the agreement on trade with China. As such, there is some optimism regarding r demand for peas (to be used in livestock feed industry) to improve, in case China's purchases decrease for U.S. soybeans and corn.

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