Jul 28, 2016

Brazil's Safrinha Corn Estimates continue Declining

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

The state of Parana is the second leading safrinha corn producing state in Brazil after Mato Grosso. Farmers in the state planted approximately 21% of Brazil's safrinha corn acreage in 2016 with Mato Grosso planting 34.5%.

The safrinha corn harvest in Parana is approximately 60% complete and the Soybean and Corn Producers Association of Parana (Aprosoja-PR) is estimating that the yield will be down 15% or more compared to last year due to the adverse weather that was experienced during the growing season.

The weather problems started early with very dry weather during the month of April. Then during the month of May, it was just the opposite with long periods of cloudy weather and excessive rains. The growing season was capped off with a week of freezing temperatures in June before the crop had fully matured.

As a result, the president of Aprosoja, Jose Eduardo Sismeiro, feels that the loses could end up being greater than the 15% that is currently being estimated. He indicated that many corn fields looked fine visually, but when the corn was harvested, the kernel weights were significantly below normal. The biggest impact on the crop was in the northern part of the state and with the later planted corn.

Farmers in the state forward contracted 60% of their anticipated corn production at prices in the range of R$ 25 to R$ 30 per sack (approximately $3.44 to $4.13 per bushel). The current price of corn in the state is in the range of R$ 37 per sack or approximately $5.10 per bushel. Since farmers in the state have little additional corn to sell, corn prices are expected to move higher. Farmers in the state are being advised to hold onto their corn in hope of even higher prices.

The safrinha corn harvest in Goias is estimated to be 65% complete with losses estimated at 40% due to the hot and dry conditions during most of the growing season. The state of Goias planted approximately 13% of the safrinha corn acreage in Brazil. Initial estimates put the state's safrinha corn production at 8 million tons, but many estimates are now below 5 million tons. The average corn yield in the state is now estimated at 65 sacks per hectare or 60 bu/ac. Corn prices in the state are increasing due to reduced production and are now in the range of R$ 42.00 to R$ 50.00 per sack (approximately $5.75 to $6.85 per bushel).

The state of Mato Grosso is the largest safrinha corn producing state in Brazil and the corn harvest in the state is approaching 70% complete, which is about 5% ahead of last year's pace. The latest planted corn has been impacted the most and yield estimates keep declining as the harvest progresses. In Nova Mutum, which is located in central Mato Grosso, the Soybean and Corn Producers Association in the region (Aprosoja-MT) is reporting that the corn is 90% harvested. There is a wide variability in corn yields in the municipality this year with some farmers reporting yields of 130 sacks per hectare (120 bu/ac), with others reporting 60 sacks per hectare (55 bu/ac) and some reporting zero yields.