2019 NBMB Meeting: Broomcorn, Tampico and Mop Yarn

Bart Pelton from Pelray International Company

The National Broom, Mop and Brush meeting was held October 10-11, 2019, in St. Louis, Mo. Below we have early reports on broomcorn, tampico and mop yarn. Next week, we’ll post reports on handle materials. The Foreign Exchange Report and 2020 Economic Outlook by Bart Pelton will be in the print and digital versions of the November-December issue of Brushware.

Broomcorn Report

Bart Pelton | Pelray International Company
The new crop this year is a little smaller than a year before, but the demand is off, so the decline in supply is matching the demand. Plus, we still have carryover from the 2018 crop and even the 2017 crop, so there is plenty of leftover broomcorn. Even with a small crop, it’s not putting any upward pressure on price. Broomcorn prices are actually off slightly. The prices would be off more, but the major processors have higher cost broomcorn leftover from 2017, so they are kind of trying to average their costs with the lower prices from the newer crop and the higher prices from the older crops.

Aphids are still a problem, but it hasn’t impacted the crop much this year because most of the farmers know they have to spray for aphids or they’re going to lose their crops. But they are reducing the crop size some – not because of the aphids, but because the farmers would rather produce something they don’t have to spray.

MEXICO DEMAND: There is still quite a bit of demand for broomcorn in Mexico with more than 100 broom winders operating … so, the corn broom business may have shrunk, but it’s still around.

SEED IMPROVEMENT: We’ve been getting some broomcorn seed from the University of Illinois that we’ve been exporting or donating to the Mexican growers to use for seed crops to improve the quality of the seed. We are being told that the University of Illinois seed has superior yields and better fiber than the Mexican seed that they have been using year after year.

Tampico Report

Bart Pelton | Pelray International Company
No market fluctuates quite like tampico as far as supply and demand. We’ve gotten to a period where demand has tailed off some. China is not importing as much tampico as it was. I think it is more of an inventory adjustment, but lead times on tampico are down and there is a little bit of softness in the tampico market. But it continues to be plenty available.

Mop Yarn Report

Andrew Daily | Jones Family of Companies
Because of the tariff war, the amount of consumption of US textile products, yarn, cotton, etc. by China has been depressed. The year’s crop and harvest has been pretty significant. This year’s crop is going to be 21.7 million bales – that’s an increase over last year of more than 18 percent, so it’s pretty easy to see where the market is for mop yarn and other textiles. There’s not a market to trade into, so everyone is watching for good news on a trade agreement.

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