The Numbers Are In: Where exports ended up for U.S. producers in 2023

Ag analysts have been bracing to see a big hit to ag exports this year, and their expectations have become a reality.

For fiscal year 2023, which ended in September, exports were just shy of $180 billion, which is 9 percent below last year, but analysts say those numbers have to be put into perspective. There have been spikes in recent years for ag exports, and these numbers reflect a more normal trend.

“Exports of wheat for fiscal year 23 were $6.5 billion, down 21 percent from the previous year. Corn exports were $13.1 billion, down 32 percent from the previous year. Soybean exports were $32.7 billion, down 2 percent from last year, and cotton exports were $6.4 billion, down 28 percent from last year,” said Bart Kenner.

Kenner says imports were slightly higher.

“Agricultural imports were $195.4 billion, up 1 percent from the previous year, or a trade balance for fiscal year 2023 of $16.6 billion, which is down $18.6 billion from the $2 million trade surplus for fiscal year 2022.

Just last month, Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack announced $2 billion in spending to help producers develop and maintain export markets.