Dec 13, 2017

Conab Increases Brazilian Soybean Estimate, Corn declines Slightly

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

In their December Crop Report, Conab increased their estimate of the 2017/18 Brazilian soybean crop by 1.6 million tons and they made only a minor downward adjustment to the 2017/18 Brazilian corn estimate.

The 2017/18 Brazilian soybean crop is now estimated at 109.1 million tons, which is up from the 107.5 million tons estimated in November. Even with the increase, the current estimate is down 4.9 million tons from the 114.0 million tons produced last year.

The 2017/18 Brazilian soybean acreage is estimated at 34.96 million hectares (86.3 million acres), which is up 3.1% from last year. The average soybean yield is now estimated at 3,123 kg/ha (45.2 bu/ac), which is up 0.7 bu/ac from their November estimate. Even with the increase in yield, the 2017/18 crop is still below the 3,364 kg/ha last year (48.7 bu/ac). Soybean yields in Brazil were record high last year due to nearly ideal weather. Currently, they are not expected to be as high this year, but that will depend on the weather for the remainder of the growing season.

The 2017/18 Brazilian corn crop is estimated at 92.2 million tons, which is down slightly from last month. Conab is estimating that the full-season corn acreage declined 9.6% from last year and the yields will be down 9% from last year, therefore the full-season corn production will be down 17.8% from last year. The full-season corn production is estimated at 25.0 million tons, which is down 5.4 million tons from the 30.4 million tons produced in 2016/17.

For the safrinha corn crop, Conab basically carried forward everything from last year. The acreage is unchanged from last year at 12.1 million hectares (29.8 million acres) and the yield is down only 0.3% from last year. The safrinha corn production is estimated at 67.1 million tons, down 0.3% from last year.

Conab will conduct their first field survey of the Brazilian safrinha corn crop at the end of January and they will release their estimate in the February Crop Report.