Consultant Sticks with South American Crop Projections after Improved Weather

Posted on Tue, 03/23/2021 - 06:43

South American Crop Consultant Dr. Michael Cordonnier maintained his Brazilian soybean crop estimate of 132 MMT, and his bias is neutral going forward. Weather last week was favorable, with drier weather for central Brazil and wetter conditions for southern states like Rio Grande do Sul. But Cordonnier pointed out some areas of Mato Grosso continue to receive excess rain; at least four cities in the state declared states of emergency. The forecast calls for drier weather in south-central Brazil and more rain for Rio Grande do Sul, which will help with pod fill. Cordonnier observes, “This is a good forecast for soybean harvesting, but not so good for the safrinha corn crop.”

While the ideal planting window for safrinha corn closed weeks ago, high corn prices are motivating farmers to continue planting. “They might only get half of a corn crop because it is being planted so late, but they could still make money at these prices,” he observes. Cordonnier stuck with his Brazilian corn crop estimate of 105 MMT, and his bias is neutral to lower going forward.

Planting of Brazil’s safrinha corn crop reached 86.2% complete across the Center-South region, reports the consultancy Safras & Mercado. That’s still 10 percentage points behind the historical average for this point in the season and 4.1 percentage points behind last year at this time.

Cordonnier says, “The eventual safrinha corn yields will be determined by two things: when the summer rainy season ends and if there are frosts in Parana and Mato Grosso do Sul before the corn matures.”

Rains stabilize Argentine crops

Cordonnier also maintained his Argentine soybean crop estimate of 46 MMT, and his bias is neutral going forward. He reports rains last week helped stabilize soybeans “at least for the time being.” But he cautions that crop conditions are variable, reflecting spotty rains. More rain is expected for central production regions this week.

Cordonnier also maintained his Argentine corn crop estimate of 45.5 MMT, and his bias is neutral to slightly lower going forward. He says recent rains stabilized the crop, and more rainfall should benefit later-planted corn this week.

Harvest of both crops is just getting started.