USSEC held the Second Soy Outlook Virtual Conference for the Middle East/North Africa (MENA) region on July 1st, 2020. 76 participants from the MENA region attended the roundtable meeting. Participants included key crushers, poultry integrators, feed millers, and soy traders from the region.
During the webinar; participants listened to presentations with topics encompassing long-term commodity cycle; money flow (commodity funds); critical contract issues in today’s COVID environment; macro influences; ocean freight and logistical concerns for buyers; and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) supply/demand tables.
Speakers were Robert Bresnahan, President and CEO Trilateral, Inc.; Jay O’Neil, HJ O’Neil Commodity Consulting; Stan Born, Director, USSEC and American Soybean Association (ASA); and Brent Babb, USSEC Regional Director – EU/MENA.
“The value of the USSEC Second Soy Outlook Conference (MENA) was opportune as buyers, shippers, and producers find themselves in an unfamiliar environment due to COVID-19,” says Bresnahan. “Jay O'Neil addressed the ramifications of COVID on the shipping industry and introduced some of the potential changes that may occur. Buyers of U.S. soybeans need to be aware of these potentially disruptive changes in their supply chains. I noted several factors that will influence soybean prices throughout the growing season. Most notably, the USDA's Quarterly Stocks and Acreage report, released June 30th, was interpreted for possible market direction, and how COVID's negative effects on macroeconomic trends will directly impact grain pricing.”
“As mentioned in the presentations, the COVID-19 virus is rebounding in the U.S. and this is generating a lot of concern, domestically and internationally. Everyone wants to understand what further impact COVID will have on U.S. and global economies,” states O’Neil. “This has also been a unique weather year with delayed corn and soybean plantings and reduced acres in the U.S. Yesterday, USDA published their crop planting and grain stocks updates and the results generated some surprises and swift market reactions. The webinar updates provided important insights and some clarity for our customers just a day after the USDA report and during the same week that the COVID-19 resurgence is hitting all the news outlets. Congratulations to USSEC for providing real time updates in this volatile market environment.”