The U.S. Grains Council reports the Japanese agriculture industry has been making significant strides to regain its normal feed mill production capacity within the next few months. USGC director in Japan, Tommy Hamamoto, says assuming significant escalation of the nuclear power plant issues will not arise and in spite of the horrendous losses suffered in Japan, the Council believes the consumer demand in Japan will remain strong and will drive continued imports of U.S. coarse grains.
"Logistical issues will continue to be a problem, but the Japanese feed industry is working hard to recover from the damage," Hamamoto said. "By April or May, the Council is hopeful Japan will recover and return to a somewhat normalcy."
Exposure to radiation will remain a longer term concern. Japan's Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries released a notice alerting livestock farmers to be cautious and not to feed radioactive-material-contaminated hay, roughage, silage and water to livestock.
As reported by the Council, four of Japan's major importing facilities and attached feed mills were severely damaged by the earthquake and subsequent tsunami that struck Japan on March 11. These four facilities account for around 15% of Japan's total annual compound feed production of 25 million tons. Another mill, which accounts for an additional 15%, suffered some damage but compound feed production has already partially resumed.