Iran to Export Wheat for First Time Amid Global Glut as Domestic Output Increases
After an increase to domestic output surpassed local demand, Iran will export 400,000 tons of wheat into global markets already awash in supply.
Iran made state purchases of 8.08 million tons of wheat from domestic farmers this year, an increase of 1.4 million tons over purchases made last year, according to deputy agriculture minister, Ali Ghanbari. From these purchases, durum wheat will be exported overseas.
After Egypt, Iran ranks about equal with Turkey as the second largest wheat importer in the Middle East, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) data. However, Ghanbari announced in August that Iran will not be importing wheat this year as stockpiles have reached 8.3 million tons for 2015 – a level far exceeding the average stocks of 3.1 million tons for the years between 2012 and 2014 according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
These Iranian shipments come at a time when global markets are in the midst of a glut, with worldwide production outpacing demand for a third year in a row, causing wheat prices in Chicago to fall by 17% this year.