Increased moisture as well as insect and disease damage could lead to a 4-5 percent decrease in China's 2005 corn crop. Todd Meyer, the U.S. Grains Council's senior director based in Beijing, made the projection recently during a conference call on China's 2005 production levels and overall feed grain supply and demand.

“By the time you add everything up, it looks like a 4-5 percent reduction across the board from last year,” said Meyer. “USDA is estimating production levels ranging from 126-128 million metric tons and we're below that level and we could adjust those numbers as we see harvest numbers come in.”