HAMBURG, Germany, August 4, 2003 -- CropChoice news -- Reuters, 08/01/03:
German-based global grain trading house Toepfer International,
controlled by U.S. agribusiness giant Archer Daniels
Midland ADM.N , said on Friday its December 2001/November
2002 financial year saw "very positive business
The company sold 41.1 million tonnes of grains, oilseeds,
oils and feeds of all types, up 3.8 percent on the year.
But the weaker exchange rate of the dollar against
the euro and lower prices meant turnover fell 2.9 percent
on the year to 5.8 billion euros.
The company traditionally does not release profit figures.
But it said "a considerably higher dividend was
distributed to shareholders."
"Business development in the first months of the
new financial year was less satisfactory," it said.
"Traded volumes were two percent lower than in
the same period a year ago."
Toepfer said it was not possible to make a forecast
about new year performance until the global harvest
position was clearer.
"The expansion of our operations especially in
the countries of the Ukraine, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria
and Poland should open up new opportunities both in
imports and local business in these regions," it
It said grain volumes sold in Europe and Asia in 2001/02
were significantly higher than the previous year but
were down on the year in South America. The reason was
unattractive South American conditions.
Toepfer said the year was marked by the massive expansion
of grain exports by east European countries benefiting
from bumper harvests and improved transport infrastructure.
Toepfer has contributed to this by investment in regional
silo and grain handling equipment, it said.
The company again expanded its global oilseeds trade,
Increased Chinese demand was a major factor supporting
Toepfer said it expects China's soybean imports to
rise to 17 million tonnes in 2002/03, up four million
tonnes in the last two years.
The important European Union feed ingredient market
showed little change in 2001/02.
"Growth is not seen as probable in this market
in the coming years," Toepfer said. "This
is mainly due to the continuing high use of grains to
feed farm animals."
"Around 120 million tonnes of grain is now used
annually in this sector," Toepfer said. "This
gives grain a share of more than 50 percent of total
EU compound feed production in comparison to only 40
percent before the start of agricultural market reform
The company has increased its feed grain activities
to reflect this trend, it said.