SINGAPORE, May 16 (Reuters) -
* The price of Brazilian soybeans being offered for export has dropped below U.S. cargoes in the face of slowing Chinese demand for prompt shipments.
* Chinese buyers have slowed purchases in recent weeks following poor demand for animal feed ingredient soymeal. Pig farmers, key buyers of soymeal, are losing money with pork prices below the cost of production.
* “The worst is yet to come, next month will be really bad,” said one trader at a multinational company which runs soybean processing facilities in China.
* “Crushing plants are packed with soymeal and pig farmers are sending a message that demand is weak. There is not a single Chinese buyer for Brazilian beans in the market for prompt shipment,” he said, declining to be identified as he was not authorised to speak with media.
* Brazilian soybeans for prompt shipment were quoted at $389.10 a tonne S-BRZPAR-A1 on Tuesday compared with U.S. cargoes 2YSB-USG-A1 being offered at $405.50.
* China’s purchases of U.S. soybeans have recently dipped, trade and industry sources say, as fears of further action by Beijing to curb imports of U.S. crops following last month’s anti-dumping move on sorghum rattles the agriculture industry.
Reporting by Gavin Maguire and Naveen Thukral Editing by Joseph Radford