China’s corn harvest rose by more than 10 million metric tons in 2010, Agriculture Minister Han Changfu said in a speech published on the ministry’s website.
But the country would no longer enjoy surplus corn supplies, although it would strive for self-sufficiency in corn, wheat and rice, said Vice Minister Wei Chaoan in a speech that was also posted on the ministry’s website.
The country’s corn industrial processors are likely to need 70 million metric tons of corn this year, up from 60 million metric tons in 2010, Wei said.
Those figures are far above most estimates. Analysts who gave a breakdown put processing demand at 35-50 million metric tons.
The Business Spectator quoted a China-based analyst with a foreign trading house as saying, "The numbers are nonsense. They’re impossibly high. It could foreshadow further government moves to control corn’s industrial use in the future."