Monday, October 26, 2009

Weekly Cashews Update

OCT 24, 2009 There is nothing new to report about the Cashew market. Prices are unchanged i.e. W240 around 2.90, W320 around 2.65, W450 around 2.40 FOB. Reasonbale business being done to various markets but there is no strong demand from any market. At the same there is no strong selling pressure from any origin. Market seems to have settled in a “comfortable” mode.
RCN market is quiet with no movement from Tanzania so far (although we are at the end of Oct). There are unconfirmed reports that shipments from Mozambique may start earlier than usual. Limited quantities of good quality RCN in India being traded at reasonable prices but there is fair amount of low quality RCN which has no takers. Due to the delayed Brazil crop, there is a wide variety of estimates and the continuing strength of the currency is another concern.
Although there is a steady flow of enquiries from small buyers for prompt shipment, we have not seen any big buying interest from large buyers. This means that they will be drawing down on inventories at the end of the year and depending on strength of physical offtake in the fourth quarter, they will need to buy small or big quantity for first quarter shipments.
There will be a reasonable quantity of RCN in the first quarter (esp because of the delay in Brazil crop) but that might be compensated by demand from all markets for first quarter shipments (as the volume of forward business has been much lower than normal). If the demand is steady, prices will remain in the current range with a possibility of slight softening to the lower in the second quarter. IF demand in first quarter is strong, prices will remain close to (or even cross) the high end of the current range and this will keep prices steady when we move into the big harvesting period of second and third quarters. A big decline in prices is possible only if demand in first half is weak COUPLED with good crops in Northern Hemisphere.
To sum up, unless something dramatic happens, we can expect range bound market for next few months with a small chance of big increase or big decline but with good chance of increased volatility within current range,
What do you think about the market situation ?? Would appreciate your views on demand trends, forecast of market movement, news from origins and any other news / info
Regards,Pankaj N.

Monday, October 19, 2009

AU: Almond industry celebrates success

The Australian almond industry has recorded its most successful almond blossom season to date with record almond sales and festivities held across the almond growing regions.

This year’s almond blossom season extended from late July through till late August.

Throughout this year’s almond blossom season, the Almond Board of Australia (ABA) ran a public relations campaign, advertising as well as in-store promotion in both Coles and Woolworths. The in-store promotion included point-of-sale materials such as posters, shelf wobblers and free almond blossom tins attached to 750 gram bags of natural Australian almonds.

Marketing director at Select Harvest, Matthew Graham, said the almond blossom promotion had been a great success.

“The almond blossom in-store promotion exceeded all expectations with record shipments of almonds delivered to both Coles and Woolworths. It is great to see the sale of almonds is on the rise with results of this almond blossom campaign going above and beyond the results of previous almond promotions,” said Graham.

According to Julie Haslett, CEO of the ABA, domestic consumption of almonds has increased in the last year.

“Australians are eating more almonds than ever before, with domestic consumption having increased by over 10 per cent in the last 12 months,” Haslett said.

Australia currently produces around 3 per cent of the world’s almonds. Over the next three years, as existing plantings reach full maturity, it is forecast that Australia will surpass Spain (8 per cent) to become the world’s second largest almond producer, behind California (82 per cent).

The key almond growing areas around Australia include Sunraysia in Victoria, the Riverland and Adelaide in South Australia and the Riverina region in NSW.

The Almond Board of Australia (ABA) is a non-profit, membership-based organisation representing the interests of Australian almond growers, processors and marketers.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Cashew market Oct.3

Cashew market OCT 3, 2009

continued to be steady with a firm undertone.. There was a fair amount of business in W320 in 2.60-2.70 FOB range. Most of the sales were to USA & some to off markets. Europe was quiet. Other grades were also steady i.e. W240 between 2.85-2.90, W450 between 2.35-2.40 FOB - stray sales reported. Only a few processors in India & Vietnam have participated in recent activity. Most of the large processors in both origins are waiting to see how things develop. Brazil continues to be quiet due to crop delay & currency situation but we expect some activity from them in Oct/Nov.

RCN prices moved up a bit due to Vietnam buying of IVC in the 725-750 range plus possible delays in movement from Tanzania. Initial reports indicate that Govt may fix farmgate price equivalent to approx US$ 1000 which is about 10-12% higher than current kernel prices (depending on outturn). Official announcement is expected next week.

European enquiries for next year contracts began early and some contracts have been made. Some more contracts are expected to be finalised in coming weeks. Limited selling interest from origin, wide price range, currency fluctuation seem to be delaying decisions. Given the fact that current prices are lower & economic situation outlook is much better than last year, one would expect that roasters & retailers would take larger positions but the uncertainty of price (and currency) trend might result in only part volumes being contracted now.

Asian consumption growth is strong. Many other markets are also showing signs of growth in consumption but a proper trend will be known only after 2-3 quarters of growth. Some buyers are showing interest to cover forward requirements at current levels but processors do not seem to be inclined to sell unless they can get a premium.

If the current standoff due to wide difference in selling & buying ideas continues, we might enter 2010 with lower than normal volumes covered for forwards and this will increase volatility in the first quarter which will make things difficult for all stakeholders.

We expect market to move in a narrow range in the next few weeks with steady activity for nearbys around current levels and slightly higher levels for forwards (in case buyers decide to cover more volume for FH 2010).

Please advise your views on market + news of recent activity / offers + your forecast of demand & price trend + any other info / news

Pankaj N. Sampat