The National Oilseed Processors Association (NOPA) issued its mid-month member crush and stocks report on Wednesday, May 15. The April data showed that members crushed 4.354 million tonnes, or approximately 160.0 million bushels, in the month. This fell shy of the previous April record of 4.385 million tonnes processed in 2018. On average, the trade was looking for total crush to be lower at around 4.398 million tonnes, or almost 162 million bushels, in the month. The data were somewhat disappointing to market bulls as the report fell short of lofty expectations, but even the slight miss suggests that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) current crush forecast for the 2018/19 marketing year is attainable. Monthly crush totals will need to, on average, run near last year’s levels in order to reach USDA’s crush forecast for the current 2018/19 marketing year.
Processing data from NOPA points to the soybean oil yield having fallen by 0.07 pounds per bushel from March to 11.69 pounds per bushel in April as crush resulted in soybean oil output of 848,845 tonnes or roughly 1.8 billion pounds. The implied soybean meal yield also slipped 0.10 pounds per bushel in April to come in at 46.82 pounds per bushel as soybean meal output rose to 3.397 million tonnes. Member soybean oil stocks were shown to have risen slightly from the end of March to reach just 1.787 billion pounds or about 851,574 tonnes. Futures-implied crush margins rose to their highest levels since November 2018, which suggests that both U.S. and foreign soybean processing are looking at opportunity lock-in margins at their highest margins in the past six months.