Increased demand for vegetable oils to make biodiesel will lead to shortages of the materials, raising the cost of fats used to make food, Oil World said.
Argentina is expected to produce 2.3 million metric tons of biodiesel, made from soybeans, this year, up 27 percent from 2010, Oil World said in a report today. Exports may total 1.5 million tons, according to the report. In Brazil, biodiesel output may gain 14 percent, Oil World said.
“The available global supplies of vegetable oils and animal fats are insufficient to satisfy all the requirements of the energy sector without jeopardizing satisfaction of demand for food,” Oil World said. “This is going to be a supportive factor for oils and fats prices.”
Argentina’s soybean oil exports rose 100,000 tons to 1.2 million tons from January through April, partly because of rising requirements for biodiesel production, Oil World said. Indonesian production of the biofuel may rise to at least 800,000 tons by the end of 2011, most of which will be exported to the European Union, according to the report.
“Accelerating usage of vegetable oils for biodiesel could create scarcity and appreciating food oil prices later this year, unless policy-makers start fine-tuning their policies of biofuel-usage mandates,” Oil World said.
China will buy more vegetable oils after domestic stocks fell 800,000 tons in the past 12 months, Oil World said. Chinese imports may increase 20 percent to 3 million tons from July through September as palm oil and soy oil purchases rise, according to the report.
“There are several indications that world production will not rise sufficiently during the remainder of this year to satisfy global demand for food and for oleochemical usage as well as for the energy sector,” Oil World said.
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