Sep 05, 2023

Farmers in Rio Grande do Sul Hoping for a Better 2023/24

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

Farmers in Brazil's southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul are hoping for a better 2023/24 growing season after three disappointing seasons in row. The state suffered from below normal rainfall for the last three years due to La Nina. Currently, an El Nino is gaining strength in the eastern Pacific which generally results in above normal rainfall during the growing season in southern Brazil.

Emater is estimating the 2023/24 soybean crop in the state at 22.44 million tons, which would represent an increase of 73% compared to last year's drought plagued crop. The soybean acreage in the state is estimated at 6.7 million hectares (16.5 million acres) which is up 1.3% compared to last year.

Rio Grande do Sul is usually the third largest soybean producing state in Brazil after Mato Grosso and Parana. In a normal year, the state is responsible for approximately 14-15% of Brazil's soybean production.

The 2023/24 corn production in the state is estimated at 6.06 million tons according to Emater. This represents an increase of 53% compared to last year. The corn acreage in the state is estimated at 817,500 hectares (2.01 million acres), which represents an increase of 0.7% compared to last year.

Corn is the first crop planted in the spring and some farmers have already started to plant their 2023/24 corn. Corn planting will continue through September and October. Soybeans are planted later with most of the soybeans planted after the winter wheat has been harvested in October and November.

Rio Grande do Sul is the largest rice producing state in Brazil with most of the rice produced under flood irrigation. Rice acreage in 2023/24 is expected to increase 7.4% to 902,400 hectares (2.22 million acres) and the state is expected to produce 7.5 million tons of rice, which is up 4.1%.