Chickpeas Maintain Easy Tone

PANAMA - Mar 29/19 - SNS -- Farmers in the United States are slashing land in chickpeas this year, but the amount of change is less than many market participants had expected, creating worries than global supplies of medium caliber product will remain well above demand for at least another year.

Growers intend to reduce chickpea area from 859,600 to 519,000 acres. Land in small caliber chickpeas could drop from 222,700 to 137,000 acres, while land in large caliber plunges from 636,900 to 382,000 acres. Small caliber chickpeas are defined as varieties smaller than 20/64 inches, while large caliber varieties are bigger.

Markets had hoped for a steeper decrease in seeded area because average yields suggest production will approach 314,000 metric tons (MT) for a record available supply of around 754,000. Last year's harvest totalled 578,885 MT for an available supply of almost 681,000.