IndexBox has just published a new report called Africa – Grain – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights. The following is a summary of the report’s key findings.

The revenue of the grain market in Africa amounted to $109 billion in 2018, picking up by 9% against the previous year. This figure reflects the total revenue of producers and importers (excluding logistics costs, retail marketing costs and retailers’ margins, which will be included in the final consumer price).

The market value increased at an average annual rate of 1,4% over the period from 2014 to 2018; the trend pattern remained relatively stable, with somewhat noticeable fluctuations being observed in certain years.

Consumption by country

The countries with the highest volumes of grain consumption in 2018 were Egypt (44 million tons), Nigeria (31 million tons) and Ethiopia (26 million tons), together comprising 37% of total consumption. These countries were followed by Algeria, Morocco, South Africa, Tanzania, Mali, Sudan, Kenya, Niger and Tunisia, which together accounted for a further 38%.

Market forecast to 2030

Driven by increasing demand for grain in Africa, the market is expected to continue an upward consumption trend over the next decade. Market performance is forecast to retain its current trend pattern, expanding with an anticipated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2,5% for the period from 2018 to 2030, which is projected to bring the market volume to 366 million tons by the end of 2030.

Production in Africa

Grain production totalled 201 million tons in 2018, increasing by 1,6% against the previous year. The total output volume increased at an average annual rate of 1,5% from 2014 to 2018; the trend pattern remained relatively stable, with only minor fluctuations being observed throughout the analysed period. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2017 with an increase of 6,7% against the previous year. The volume of grain production peaked in 2018 and is expected to retain its growth in the near future. The general positive trend in terms of grain output was largely conditioned by a slight increase in the harvested area and a relatively flat yield figure trend pattern.

Production by country

The countries with the highest volumes of grain production in 2018 were Nigeria (26 million tons), Ethiopia (25 million tons) and Egypt (22 million tons), together accounting for 37% of total production. South Africa, Morocco, Tanzania, Mali, Sudan, Niger, Algeria, Burkina Faso and Kenya lagged somewhat behind, together accounting for a further 37%.

Harvested area and yield in Africa

In 2018, the area of grain harvested in Africa amounted to 125 million hectares, remaining relatively unchanged against the previous year. The average grain yield in Africa stood at 1,6 ton/ha, flattening against the previous year.

Exports in Africa

In 2018, grain exports in Africa stood at 2,3 million tons, growing by 14% against the previous year. In value terms, grain exports stood at $720 million (IndexBox estimates).

Exports by country

South Africa was the largest exporter of grain in Africa with the volume of exports coming to 1,2 million tons, which amounted to nearly 52% of total exports in 2018. Uganda (471 000 tons) took the second position in the ranking, distantly followed by Tanzania (212 000 tons) and Zambia (144 000 tons). The share of total exports of these countries came to nearly 36%. Kenya (70 000 tons), Sudan (46 000 tons) and Burkina Faso (44 000 tons) followed a long way behind the leaders.

Exports from South Africa decreased at an average annual rate of 17,0% from 2014 to 2018. At the same time, Kenya (64,3%), Uganda (37,8%), Tanzania (32,4%), Zambia (10,8%) and Sudan (3,6%) displayed positive paces of growth. Moreover, Kenya emerged as the fastest-growing exporter in Africa, with a CAGR of 64,3% from 2014 to 2018. By contrast, Burkina Faso (-10,3%) illustrated a downward trend over the same period. Uganda (15pp), Tanzania (6,2pp), Kenya (2,6pp) and Zambia (2,1pp) significantly strengthened its position in terms of the total exports, while South Africa saw its share reduced by 57,6% from 2014 to 2018. The shares of the other countries remained relatively stable throughout the analysed period.

In value terms, South Africa ($407 million) remains the largest grain supplier in Africa, comprising 56% of total grain exports. The second position in the ranking was occupied by Uganda ($94 million), with a 13% share of total exports. It was followed by Tanzania, with a 10% share.

In South Africa, grain exports plunged by an average annual rate of 13,9% over the period from 2014 from 2018. In the other countries, the average annual rates increased as follow: Uganda (27,8%/year) and Tanzania (32,0%/year).

Imports in Africa

In 2018, approximately 73 million tons of grain were imported in Africa; increasing by 4,5% against the previous year. In value terms, grain imports amounted to $15 billion (IndexBox estimates).

Imports by country

In 2018, Egypt (22 million tons), distantly followed by Algeria (14 million tons), Morocco (6,8 million tons), Nigeria (5 million tons) and Tunisia (3,5 million tons) were the key importers of grain, together achieving 70% of total imports. Libya (3 million tons), Sudan (2,9 million tons), Kenya (2,4 million tons), South Africa (2,2 million tons) and Zimbabwe (1,2 million tons) together made up 16% of total imports.

From 2014 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of imports, among the main importing countries, was attained by Zimbabwe, while imports for the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, the largest grain importing markets in Africa were Egypt ($4,1 billion), Algeria ($2,6 billion) and Morocco ($1,4 billion), with a combined 54% share of total imports. These countries were followed by Nigeria, Tunisia, Sudan, Libya, Kenya, South Africa and Zimbabwe, which together accounted for a further 30%. – IndexBox