Sep 07, 2022

Brazil Exporting and Importing Corn at the Same Time

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

Brazil exported 7.5 million tons of corn during the month of August according to the Foreign Trade Secretariat (Secex). This represents an increase of 74% compared to the 4.3 million tons of corn exports in August of 2021. From January through July, Brazil's corn exports increased 85% year-on-year.

Brazil's corn exports increased due to a number of factors including China's inability to import its expected 10 million tons of corn from Ukraine, adverse weather in China, and lower corn production in western Europe. Brazil's corn exports are expected to be strong during the coming months also due to China now allowing corn imports from Brazil.

The Grain Exporters Association of Brazil (Anec) is estimating that Brazil's 2022 corn exports will be 43 million tons.

While at the same time of surging corn exports, Brazil continues to import corn as well. During the month of August, Brazil imported 329,000 tons of corn according to Secex, which is up 126% compared to August of 2021.

Most Brazil's corn imports are from neighboring Paraguay and Argentina and they flow into the livestock sector in southern Brazil. For the last two years, corn production in southern Brazil has been disappointing due to adverse weather resulting from La Nina.

Another reason why Brazil continues to import corn into southern Brazil is the high cost of transporting corn from central Brazil. There are no rail links from central Brazil to the interior of southern Brazil, so all the corn must be transported by trucks, which is the most expensive way of transporting grain in Brazil.