Consultant Continues to Lower Brazilian Crop Estimates

Posted on 03/09/2017 10:23 AM

South American Crop Consultant Dr. Michael Cordonnier has trimmed his Brazilian soybean and corn estimates again, now pegging the crops at 97 MMT and 76 MMT, respectively. He has a slightly lower bias toward the soybean crop and a lower bias toward the corn crop.

Regarding soybean production, Cordonnier says farmers continue to report lower-than-expected soybean yields from Mato Grosso, northeastern Brazil and far southern Brazil. As a result, he says it's possible the production estimate might decline a little more going forward. "Regardless of where the estimate ends up, I think the important news is that the current Brazilian soybean crop is essentially unchanged from last year and significantly below initial expectations. In fact, this is the first time in six years that Brazil's total grain production is less than the year before," he says. "Therefore, the recent string of record large crops has been broken and I think there could be significant obstacles ahead for the 2016-17 soybean crop in both Brazil and Argentina."

Meanwhile, hot and dry conditions are taking a toll on the safrinha corn crop, with little rainfall in the forecast for central Brazil. "In the hardest hit areas of central Brazil, it has not rained for two months and it looks like the rainy season in central Brazil ended in early April. Most of the rainfall is once again is forecasted for southern Brazil," he says, noting that farmers' expectations for the crop are declining on a daily basis.

"It's hard to know where the bottom is when the crop just keeps getting smaller," adds Cordonnier. "Even in the state of Mato Grosso where the safrinha corn crop had been expected to do quite well, officials in Sorriso, which is the largest corn producing municipality in Brazil, feel the corn yields may be down 15% from earlier expectations."

Dr. Cordonnier 2015-16 Soybean Estimates
Est.
Maximum
Minimum
2014-15

in million metric tons

Brazil
97.0
98.0
96.0
96.2
Argentina
56.0
57.0
53.0
61.4
Paraguay
8.8
9.3
8.3
8.1
Bolivia
3.0
3.3
2.7
2.6
Uruguay
2.5
2.7
2.2
3.1
Total
167.3
170.3
162.2
171.4
Dr. Cordonnier 2015-16
Corn Estimates
Est.
Maximum
Minimum
2014-15

in million metric tons

Brazil
76.0
78.0
74.0
85.4
Argentina
25.0
26.0
23.0
27.0
Paraguay
3.1
3.4
2.7
3.0
Bolivia
0.7
0.8
0.6
0.7
Uruguay
0.5
0.6
0.4
0.5
Total
105.3
108.8
100.7
116.2


Cordonnier left his Argentine corn and soybean crop pegs unchanged from last week. He says soybean harvest is just over half complete, but is still short of around 79% done last year at this time.

Meanwhile, corn harvest advanced only one percentage point last week to 27.5% complete. "I continue to be on the low side of the corn estimates in Argentina because I feel there was some damage caused by the excessive moisture during April, but we won't know the extent of the damage until more of the corn is harvested," he says.


 

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