Jan 13, 2016

Relatively Slow Start to Soybean Harvesting in Brazil

Author: Michael Cordonnier/Soybean & Corn Advisor, Inc.

In a more normal year, the state of Mato Grosso usually leads the way for soybean harvesting in Brazil, but this has not been a normal year. Hot and dry conditions in the state from September through December led to a slow planting pace and a lot of the early planted soybeans had to be replanted due to poor germination and inadequate plant populations. The combination of slow planting and the need to replant some of the soybeans is now leading to a slow start to harvesting.

Instead of ramping up the harvest in Mato Grosso by mid-January, this year the harvest will not peak until later in January or early February. The Mato Grosso Institute of Agricultural Economics (Imea) estimated late last week that 0.3% of the soybeans in the state had been harvested compared to 2% harvested last year at this time. The early soybean harvest in Mato Grosso is also being slowed down somewhat by the recent wet weather.

The 0.3% represents approximately 25,000 hectares of the 9.1 million planted in the state. Imea reported late last week that the average yield thus far in the state has been 50.6 sacks per hectare (3,036 kg/ha or 44.0 bu/ac). Many of the soybeans harvested thus far have been irrigated soybeans that were plated immediately after the soybean-free period ended on September 15th and many of these irrigated soybeans will be followed by a second crop of cotton.

The early soybean harvest has also started in western Parana. The Department of Rural Economics for the state of Parana (Deral) indicated last week that the first harvest activity is underway in Pato Branco in southwestern Parana and in Cascavel in western Parana.

It is very early in the harvest season of course, but the early harvest reports point to yields generally below expectations. Here is a brief summation of the harvest reports thus far.

The first harvest results out of Mato Grosso this year will be the lowest because the early maturing or early planted soybeans were impacted the most by the adverse weather during November and December. The later planted or later maturing soybeans will benefit from the recent improvement in rainfall. The later soybeans in Mato Grosso will not be harvested until February.