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U.S. agricultural exports forecast to reach record in 2013

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Staff writer ▼ | September 5, 2013
U.S. agricultural exportsU.S. agricultural exports in fiscal year 2013, from October 2012 through September 2013, are projected to reach $140 billion, which if realized would be a new record, USDA said late last week in its Outlook for U.S. Agricultural Trade.

Dairy exports for the year are forecast at a record $5.8 billion, up $500 million from 2012 on higher prices and greater volumes due to lagging milk production in the European Union, USDA said. Next year’s dairy export value is projected to decline by $200 million, to $5.6 billion, as volumes and global prices are expected to moderate, according to USDA.

USDA also estimates that fiscal 2014 ag exports will drop to $135 billion. Oilseeds and products are expected to decline the most, down $5.4 billion due to lower soybean and meal prices. Grain and feed exports are expected to fall $1.7 billion due to lower wheat, rice, and feeds and fodders exports. Cotton exports are forecast down $700 million as a result of lower domestic production and reduced demand from China.

Little change is expected in 2014's exports of livestock, poultry, and dairy products, while horticultural exports are forecast to increase $2.5 billion to a record $34.5 billion, USDA noted. Agricultural exports to China are forecast down $2 billion from fiscal 2013, and Canada is expected to return to its position as the top U.S. market for agricultural products.

"Driven by the productivity of U.S. farmers and ranchers, we have achieved five years of positive momentum for agricultural exports and forecast is another promising development. Agricultural exports have a real impact on Main Street and beyond, supporting more than 1 million good jobs here at home," said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

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