Aug 25, 2022

Early Wheat Harvest Starts in Brazil, Frost Damage Being Assessed

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

The wheat crop in the state of Parana in southern Brazil was negatively impacted by a frost/freeze that occurred last weekend. Damage assessments are ongoing and it usually takes several days after the event to judge the full extent of the damage.

Early wheat harvesting has already started in Parana where 2% of the wheat had been harvested as of earlier this week according to the Department of Rural Economics (Deral). Last year at this time 0% of the wheat had been harvested. The wheat is 21% in vegetative development, 22% flowering, 39% filling grain, 18% mature, 2% harvested, and the wheat is rated 3% poor, 17% average, and 80% good.

The other large wheat producing state in Brazil is Rio Grande do Sul, which also experienced a frost/freeze last weekend, but the wheat in the state is still in vegetative development and only minimal damage is expected.

Prior to the frost, Brazil's Association of Wheat Industries (Abitrigo) was very upbeat about Brazil's 2022 wheat production. They estimated that Brazil would produce 10 million tons of wheat in 2022, which is more optimistic than the 9 million tons currently estimated by Conab. Even the lower estimate of 9 million tons would still be a record wheat production for Brazil.

Wheat is the only major crop for which Brazil is not self-sufficient. The domestic demand for wheat in Brazil is approximately 12-13 million tons with the deficit being made up with imports from Argentina. The Brazilian government has a long-term goal of being self-sufficient in wheat production within 10 years. The president of Abitrigo feels that Brazil could become self-sufficient in wheat within five years by expanding wheat production into the cerrado regions of central Brazil.