PARIS, Oct 9 (Reuters) – Farm office FranceAgriMer raised its forecast for French soft wheat exports outside the European Union this season to 11.7 million tonnes on Wednesday, up from 11.0 million last month.
The revised 2019/20 forecast was up nearly 14% compared with last season’s level and would be a four-year high, FranceAgriMer’s cereal supply-and-demand data showed.
The office had said last month that export prospects were favourable, citing competitive prices that were raising hopes of French wheat regaining market share against Black Sea origins.
France has since seen several cargoes load for Morocco amid an expected rise in demand from the North African country, and picked up sales to top wheat importer Egypt, although traders say competition from Ukrainian and Russian supplies remains stiff.
The sharp upward revision to exports outweighed an increase to harvest supply, leading FranceAgriMer to lower its projection of soft wheat stocks at the end of this season to 2.9 million tonnes from 3.3 million seen last month.
That would nonetheless be 32% above 2018/19 stocks and a three-year high.
France is estimated to have harvested its second-largest soft wheat crop on record, with the farm ministry on Tuesday putting production at 39.7 million tonnes, nearly 17% above last year’s level.