Oct 26, 2017

Farmers in Southern Brazil Alerted for Potential Severe Weather

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

Farmers in southern Brazil have been alerted by the Brazilian National Weather Service (Inmet) to expect heavy rains and the possibility of severe storms between October 25th and October 29th. The possibility of additional heavy rains is coming on the heels of what has already been a very wet month of October. Some areas of southern Brazil even recorded frosts earlier this week. Freezing temperatures at this time of the year are very unusual in southern Brazil.

The alert is for the Brazilian states of Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, and Parana in addition to the neighboring regions of Paraguay and Argentina. Rainfall amounts over the next few days are expected to be 4 inches or more and the storms may be accompanied by high winds and possible hail. Inmet is warning of possible falling trees, electrical outages, localized flooding, and potential crop damage.

The state capitals of all three Brazilian states have already surpassed their normal October rainfall and these cities are located on the Atlantic Coast where the rainfall has been the lightest and the forecast is not as threating. The crop producing regions of all three states is located in the western part of these states and that is where the forecast is for the heaviest rains.

Heavy rains and storms thus far during October have already negatively impacted the winter wheat crop that is in the process of being harvested in southern Brazil. There have also been reports that the soybean, corn, and tobacco crops have also been impacted.

The wheat in Parana is more than three-quarters harvested and the crop in general has been disappointing both from the standpoint of yields and quality. The wheat harvest in Rio Grande do Sul is just getting underway with early yield reports also disappointing and there are reports of poor quality. Any additional rain and/or high winds and hail would result in even more damage to the wheat crop in Rio Grande do Sul. Much of the wheat in the state is expected to be of low quality and only serve as animal feed.

Brazil is already expected to import 7 million tons of wheat or more to meet the domestic demand for high quality wheat, but of this forecast verifies, Brazil may need to import more than 7 million tons of wheat.

The 2017/18 soybean crop in Parana is approaching 70% planted while the soybean planting in Rio Grande do Sul is just getting underway. The main impact of heavy rains on the soybean crop would be delayed planting, and the possibility of poor germination and emergence especially in low laying areas subject to flooding.