Dec 19, 2022

Corn in Rio Grande do Sul in Southern Brazil Impacted by Dryness

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

The state of Rio Grande do Sul has the largest first crop corn acreage of any state in Brazil followed closely by Minas Gerais and then Parana. Farmers in the state are expected to plant 831,500 hectares of first crop corn (2.05 million acres) or approximately 19% of Brazil's total. The first crop corn acreage in Brazil declined 2.8% in 2022/23 and the first corn crop is expected to produce 27.2 million tons or approximately 21.6% of Brazil's total corn production.

Irregular rains during the second half of November and early December have resulted in moisture stress and lower corn yields because the dry weather hit as the earlier planted corn entered into its critical reproductive phase. Farmers in the state have been slow to finish their corn planting due to dry conditions and Emater indicated that corn planting only advanced 1% last week to 89% compared to 91% last year and 92% average.

Corn yield estimates are heading lower across the state, but how low depends on rainfall amounts (see later maps of percent normal rainfall for the last four months in Rio Grande do Sul).

In the municipality of Santo Angelo in the northwestern part of the state, corn losses range from 50% to 100% with an average loss of 70-80%.

Just over the last two weeks, StoneX lowered their estimate for the state's corn production from 5.38 million tons at the start of December to 4.51 million tons on December 16th (see below bar chart).