The peanut harvest season is coming to a close in the Northern Hemisphere. However, there is still much uncertainty surrounding India's Kharif crop, with various estimates ranging from 6.9 million metric tons (mmt) to over 8 mmt. Prices have been under pressure as Chinese demand for peanut oil was not as strong as expected despite the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions. Meanwhile, the Brazilian peanut planting season is almost over, with dry conditions prevailing. During Nov-23, Brazil's high peanut prices were supported by unfavorable weather and increasing soybean prices.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the use of edible peanuts in the United States (US) increased 2% year-on-year (YoY) during the last ten months of 2023. As of October 31, 2023, the peanut reserves in commercial storage showed a 25.46% YoY decrease to 3.63 billion pounds (lbs). Additionally, the stock of shelled peanuts reached 567 million lbs, while the reserves for roasting amounted to 30 million lbs. In Oct-23, 205 million lbs of edible-grade shelled peanuts were utilized for commercial processors, with 127 million lbs being used for peanut butter products, 37.7 million lbs for peanut candies, and 35.9 million lbs for peanut snacks. The remaining 42.6 million lbs were crushed for oil, cake, and flour.
Ethiopia is taking steps to reduce its reliance on imported edible oil by increasing its domestic production of oilseeds. The country has seen a growth in the number of cooking oil factories. As a result, the government enhanced the cultivation of primary oil seeds, including grass peas, sunflowers, and peanuts, to supply these factories with the required raw materials. Ethiopia's Ministry of Agriculture plans to work with the Ministry of Trade and Industry to promote this initiative. Additionally, the government has identified ten areas that will receive special attention under a ten-year flagship program in the agriculture sector.