It’s official. The United States has become Europe’s main supplier of soya beans, reaching a 52% share compared to 25% in in the same period last year.

Compared to the first 12 weeks of the 2017 marketing year (July to mid-September), EU imports of soya beans from the US are up by 133% at 1,473,749 tonnes. At the time of the first reporting issued on 1 August 2018, and covering the first five weeks of the current marketing year, imports amounted to 360,000 tonnes, corresponding to a 280% year-on-year increase;

“I welcome the latest trade figures which show that we are delivering on the commitment made by Presidents Juncker and Trump to increase trade, particularly in relation to soya beans,” said Commissioner for Agriculture, Phil Hogan. “This reflects both our longstanding trade relationship and the potential to achieve so much more by working together to build on that relationship.”

According to a European Commission press release, the EU currently imports about 14m tonnes of soya beans per year as a source of protein to feed livestock (chicken, pigs and cattle), as well as for milk production. Soya beans from the US happen to be a very attractive feed option for European importers and users thanks to their competitive prices.