EGYPT – According the Global Agricultural Information Network report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), consumption of wheat and corn in Egypt is forecast to increase in 2019-2020 due to population growth and increase in feed demand from the domestic dairy, poultry and aquaculture sectors, reports world grain.

Corn consumption in 2019-20 is forecast to jump to 16.9 million tonnes from 16.2 million tonnes of the previous year attributed to an expanding feed industry.

USDA notes that the Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation (MALR) recently announced that the issuance of licenses for animal, poultry, and production of feed projects have more than doubled over the past two years.

However, production has been revised downward from 7.2 million tonnes earlier this year to 6.4 million tonnes.

Corn imports are projected at 10 million tonnes, up from 9.7 million tonnes in 2018-19.

The USDA said the decrease in production is due to the reduction in harvested area due to increased plantings of rice.

Meanwhile, Wheat consumption is projected to increase to 20.4 million tonnes, up from 20.1 million tonnes of the previous year due to an increase in food, seed and industrial (FSI) use consumption.

“The rise in FSI wheat consumption is attributable to population growth of about 2.4% per annum. Egypt, with a population of 99.4 million, is adding over 2 million people per year. It also is host to an estimated 5 million refugees from Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen and Sudan.” Stated USDA.

While production is projected to increase 4% over the previous year to 8.7 million tonnes, USDA attributing the growth to an increase in total harvested area that is estimated at 1.37 million hectares.

Wheat imports are forecast to be unchanged at 12.5 million tonnes.

According to a recent report by the Egyptian Ministry of Agriculture, the country is currently cultivating a total of 3.8 million acres of wheat for the season which started from September-October.

This is an increase from a total of 3.2 million acres cultivated in 2018 which yielded 8.8 million tonnes, according to data from United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Egypt imports 11-12 million tons of wheat annually via international tenders mainly from Russia, Ukraine and Belarus to meet the people’s demands of bread as the most affordable meal in the country’s food basket.