This article is taken from the July USDA Grain Transportation Report.

According to USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service Grain Stocks report (released June 30), total disappearance—the difference in grain stocks from March 1, 2023 to June 1, 2023—was 4.6 billion bushels (bbu).

This was down 4% from the previous year and the prior 5-year average.

Benchmarked against the 5-year average, off-farm stock disappearance was up 1%, but on-farm stock disappearance was down 8%.

Disappearance—the amount of grain used—is a proxy for transportation demand, because nearly all grain leaving on-farm and off-farm storage must enter the transportation system to reach domestic and export markets.

Following the March-to-June disappearance, U.S. grain stocks were left at 5.6 bbu on June 1.

This was down 9% from last year and down 21% from the 5-year average for June. Low grain stocks suggest grain transportation demand will remain muted until fall when corn and soybeans are harvested.

According to USDA’s July World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates report, total grain supplies for marketing year (MY) 2023/2024 are projected to be 24.6 bbu, which is 8 percent higher than MY 2022/2023 supplies.