Sun, June 16, 2024

Wheat Hits 10-Month Peak, Faces Decline in Futures

Wheat is on active export demand, grain

Quick Look:

  • Wheat prices hit a 10-month high despite recent declines in Chicago, Kansas City, and MPLS contracts.
  • 2023-24 wheat export sales are expected between -100,000 and 100,000 MT, with 2024-25 sales ranging from 200,000 to 650,000 MT.
  • Gene-edited wheat in Australia aims for a 10% yield boost; market availability is projected by 2028.
The wheat market has hit a 10-month high, with Chicago contracts showing significant activity. Despite the surge, these contracts fell by 4 ½ to 7 ¾ cents. Kansas City futures also saw a 2 to 4 ½ cents decline, while MPLS spring wheat dropped by 2 to 4 ¼ cents. Export sales for the 2023-24 marketing year are expected to range from -100,000 to 100,000 metric tonnes (MT), while the 2024-25 crop export sales are projected to be between 200,000 and 650,000 MT. The NOAA 7-day outlook predicts dry conditions in the southern plains and 1 to 3 inches of rain in SRW wheat areas.

Gene-Edited Wheat Trials Aim for 10% Yield Increase

In Australia, a new trial for gene-edited wheat aims to boost yields by 10%. Unlike GMOs, gene editing modifies the existing genome without introducing foreign DNA, making it safer and more like traditional breeding. This technique can produce more nutritious, resilient crops and require fewer resources. Australian seed breeder InterGrain, in partnership with U.S. agritech company Inari, is testing thousands of wheat seeds in a Queensland greenhouse. These seeds will be trialled at over 45 sites across Australia in 2025, with potential market availability by 2028.

Inari Uses AI, CRISPR for 10-15x Faster Crop Advances

Inari uses AI and CRISPR-Cas technology to achieve gene edits quickly, enhancing food security, addressing climate change, and improving farm profitability. These technologies allow multiple gene modifications, making advancements 10 to 15 times faster than traditional methods. This collaboration aims to solve major agricultural challenges and improve crop yields significantly.

Gene-Edited Crops Gain Approval in U.S., Japan, China

Regulatory attitudes towards gene-edited crops vary worldwide. The U.S. and Japan treat these crops similarly to those developed through traditional breeding, facilitating their approval. The European Union is moving towards simpler approval processes, and China has approved gene-edited disease-resistant wheat for planting. This growing acceptance indicates a shift towards recognising the benefits of gene editing in agriculture.

Inari’s High-Yield Soybeans Set for U.S. Launch

Inari is also developing high-yielding soybeans, set for commercial launch in the U.S. Although specific yield data is unavailable, the widespread adoption of GMO soybeans and corn suggests a promising future. GMO wheat remains less accepted due to its staple food status, but the success of gene-edited wheat could change this perception. These advancements highlight a significant transformation in global agriculture, driven by innovative gene-editing techniques.

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