Palm, Soybean Oils Purchases by India to Reach Record – 9 million tons, for Fourth Year

by Dave

Every year for the coming decade there will be at least a growing shortfall of 5,00,000 tons each each year. India’s edible oil import bill is next only to its crude oil import bill.

India, the top buyer of vegetable oils after China, may import a record quantity of soybean and palm oils for a fourth year as growing population and incomes increase demand for processed foods, a processors’ group said.

Purchases may climb to 9.5 million metric tons in the year starting Nov. 1
, compared with 9 million tons this season, Ashok Sethia, president of the Solvent Extractors’ Association of India, said in a phone interview from Kolkata today.

“Imports will need to increase by a minimum 4 to 5 percent annually to meet demand from a growing population in a booming economy,” said Sethia, who is due to speak at a three-day event in Mumbai starting Sept. 24. “Purchases can be more or less depending on prices and the local oilseed crops.”

Imports by India surged 64 percent to a record 1.07 million tons in August from 650,603 tons a year earlier, the association said Sept. 14. Purchases in the November-August period climbed 5 percent to 7.45 million tons from a year ago, it said. [India] relies on imports to meet almost half its annual cooking fat demand.

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