Consultant Now Sees 2015-16 South American Soybean Crop Below Year-Ago

Posted on 03/09/2017 10:23 AM

South American Crop Consultant Dr. Michael Cordonnier says a poor finish to the South American soybean crop has made it difficult to estimate crop losses, especially in Argentina where losses won't be fully known until producers can return to harvest. He slashed his Argentine soybean crop peg by 2 MMT to 57 MMT and his Brazilian soybean crop peg by 500,000 MT to 98 MMT. As a result, he now estimates the entire South American soybean crop at 169.3 MMT, below 171.4 MMT in 2014-15.

In Argentina, he says as much as 60% of the farmland was under water after heavy weekend rains and virtually no harvest progress has been made the past three weeks. In its most recent estimate, the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange said around 16% of the crop had been harvested, compared to 46% last year. "In the flooded areas, the concern is that some soybean fields will be a complete loss once the flood waters recede and other fields will have very poor quality seed that is sprouted, moldy or rotted," he notes. "Accurate estimates of the number of hectares of soybeans and corn that have been flooded are difficult to determine due to many areas still being inaccessible and the ongoing nature of the wet weather."

In Brazil, Cordonnier says as harvest continues near its finish line, farmers in northeastern and far southern Brazil are disappointed by yields. "In northeastern Brazil, the weather has been drier than normal virtually the entire growing season, so it's no surprise the yields are disappointing," he says. "In far southern Brazil, everything was going along fairly well until heavy rains started to fall in early April and never stopped, so the lower yields in southern Rio Grande do Sul are a surprise," he said.

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

in million metric tons

Brazil
98.0
99.0
97.0
96.2
Argentina
57.0
58.0
54.0
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
169.3
172.3
164.2
171.4
Dr. Cordonnier 2015-16
Corn Estimates
Est.
Maximum
Minimum
2014-15

in million metric tons

Brazil
82.0
85.0
78.0
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
111.3
115.8
104.7
116.2


Additionally, Cordonnier slashed his Brazilian corn crop peg by 3 MMT to 79 MMT, saying the estimate could go even lower if more rain doesn't come soon. "The safrinha corn crop is shrinking on a daily basis and the question is how bad it could be. The development of the crop is very spread out this year with some of the most advanced corn well into grain filling, while the most delayed corn only emerging several weeks ago," he says.

"I have been trimming the crops for the last several weeks, but in the meantime the situation continued to deteriorate, so I felt it was time to take a bigger bite out of the crop this week. The forecast for rains this week and cooler temperatures could now stabilize the corn crop at these lower levels, but the crop needs more than one chance at rain to avoid further deterioration," he adds.


 

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