2023 Corn Import Overview - Tendata

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ten data blog21-05-2024

Corn is a widely cultivated cereal crop with extensive planting areas globally. Its versatility and nutritional value make it a staple food for millions of people and play a crucial role in global trade markets. In 2023, the total global corn production reached 1.17 billion tons, with China being the largest importer of the year. Let's take a closer look at the latest trends and insights in corn imports and exports for 2023.

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Which Countries are the Top 5 Corn Importers?

China was the largest corn importer in 2023, with total import costs reaching $5.76 billion in the first three quarters. The top five corn-importing countries can vary annually, but certain nations consistently maintain a significant presence.

The top 5 corn-importing countries in 2023 were:

1. China: Due to population growth and increasing demand for animal feed and biofuels, China has remained a major importer of corn. The country heavily relies on imports to meet its domestic needs.

2. Japan: As one of the largest corn importers internationally, Japan primarily uses corn for animal feed and to meet the demands of its extensive food processing industry.

3. Mexico: Mexico relies heavily on corn imports to satisfy domestic consumption needs. Corn is a staple in traditional Mexican cuisine and is also used for animal feed.

4. South Korea: South Korea imports significant quantities of corn to support its livestock industry and for commercial production of corn starch and ethanol.

5. Spain: Spain is one of the top corn importers, driven by its large population and growing demand for plant and animal feed. Spain relies on imports to meet its domestic corn requirements.

What is the Corn Production Volume?

In 2023, the global corn production totaled 1.17 billion metric tons. Market growth is expected to be driven by population growth, industrial and animal feed demand, and increased usage of corn starch. The cost of corn production is influenced annually by factors such as climate conditions, regulations, and technological advancements. Corn remains one of the most extensively cultivated crops globally, with a very high overall yield. Major corn-producing countries include Brazil, the United States, China, and Argentina, all of which have vast arable land and favorable climates for corn cultivation. Despite fluctuations in production levels, corn remains a vital crop for global food security, animal feed, and various commercial applications.

The top 10 corn producers in 2023 were:

1. Brazil: 530 million tons

2. United States: 425 million tons

3. Argentina: 335 million metric tons

4. South Africa: 225 million tons

5. Ukraine: 55.15 million metric tons

6. Paraguay: 36 million tons

7. Russia: 33 million tons

8. India: 28 million tons

9. Myanmar: 24.5 million metric tons

10. Canada: 16 million tons


In 2023, corn import and export remained dominant in the global agricultural trade landscape. Countries such as China, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, and Spain were key corn importers. The production cost of corn will be affected by various factors, but it will continue to be a crucial crop for food production, animal feed, and commercial uses. As global demand for corn persists, the dynamics of corn imports and exports will continue to evolve, impacting global trade and national economies.

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