June 20, 2013 / 8:48 AM / 4 years ago

Japan buys 152,321 T food wheat via weekly tender

TOKYO, June 20 (Reuters) - Japan's Ministry of Agriculture
bought 152,321 tonnes of food wheat from the United States and
other suppliers in a regular tender that closed on Thursday, but
refrained from buying the U.S. western white variety.
    It was the fourth weekly tender in a row in which the
ministry avoided the U.S. western white grade after a ban it
imposed following the discovery of a genetically engineered
strain of the staple in Oregon. 
    Japan is the sixth-biggest importer of wheat, and the
ministry keeps a tight grip on imports of the country's second
most important staple after rice.
    The ministry is considering buying alternatives to U.S.
western white wheat from the United States, Canada and
Australia, the three countries from which Japan usually imports
the grain, a ministry official said.
    The ministry buys about 5 million tonnes of foreign wheat a
year for milling. Normally that would include about
700,000-800,000 tonnes of U.S. western white wheat, the only
grade used for cakes and other confectionery in Japan.
    
    Details are as follows (in tonnes):
    COUNTRY           TYPE                     QUANTITY
    U.S.             *Hard Red Winter          29,450
                     *Dark Northern Spring     35,543
                      (protein minimum 14.0 pct)
    Canada          **Western Red Spring       25,440   
                      (protein minimum 12.5 pct)
                     *Western Red Spring       35,442
                      (protein minimum 12.5 pct)
    Australia      ***Standard White           26,446
          
    Shipments: *Loading between July 21 and Aug. 20
              **Arrival by Sept. 30
             ***Loading between Aug 1 and Aug 31
        Source: Ministry of Agriculture 

 (Reporting by Osamu Tsukimori; Editing by Tom Hogue)

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