Sunflower markets

A week ago, old crop sunflower prices at the North Dakota crush plants were down 25 to 40 cents with new crop down 30 to 50 cents. Old and new crop prices were unchanged at the Lamar, Colorado, plant. Traders are keeping an eye on scheduled talks between Ukraine, Russia and Turkiye as officials try to hammer out an extension to the Black Sea Grain Initiative that’s keeping agricultural products flowing out of Ukraine. Russia wants the West to remove banking sanctions in exchange for maintaining the BSGI to free up its revenues from fertilizer and grain shipments. The agreement will expire on May 18 and has led to market volatility in recent trading. For 2023-24, global sunflower production is going to be a moving target depending on what actually gets planted in Ukraine this year. The war in Ukraine has left much uncertainty of what seed availability will be like this year and potentially in 2024 as well. Ukraine was one of the major producers and exporters of sunflower oil accounting for 50% of global sunflower oil trade. The events in Ukraine escalated an already tight vegetable oil market. This conflict between Ukraine and Russia bears watching as it has significantly increased the uncertainty of the agricultural supply and demand conditions in the region and globally. In North America, the attention of the oilseed market will shift to demand news, weather, crop conditions and production prospects in the months ahead.