Nov 08, 2023

Worrisome Signs for Brazil's 2023/24 Safrinha Corn

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

There continues to be worrisome signs on the horizon for the safrinha corn. Continued delays in the soybean planting and the need to replant some of the soybeans could potentially push the safrinha corn planting past the ideal planting window which closes about the third week of February.

Farmers are not enthusiastic about their safrinha corn and by the end of November, we should know more about any potential reductions in the safrinha corn acreage. The state of Mato Grosso usually produces about half of Brazil's safrinha corn and corn prices in the state are down more than 40% compared to last year, while costs have decreased approximately 16%.

One of the largest corn seed distributors reported that corn seed sales are down 27% compared to last year. Most estimates indicate that the safrinha corn acreage will decline in the range of 4-7% and the safrinha yields will be below last year's level.

Since I lowered the Brazilian corn estimate last week, I decided to leave it unchanged this week, but I continue to have a lower bias going forward. In a couple of weeks, we should have a better idea about the potential safrinha corn acreage.

The first corn crop in Brazil was 66% planted as of late last week compared to 63% last year according to AgRural. This represents an advance of 13% for the week.

Parana - The first corn crop in Parana was 91% as of last week and the corn is rated 2% poor, 15% average, and 83% good. In the wettest areas, some of the corn will need to be replanted and farmers are concerned about erosion and the removal of applied fertilizers. Corn has been impacted more than soybeans in the state because the first crop corn is concentrated in the southern part of the state, where the rainfall has been the heaviest.

Rio Grande do Sul - Farmers in the state have planted 78% of their full season corn with 87% of the corn germinating and in vegetative development and 13% pollinating. Several days of sunshine last week accelerated the growth of the corn as the crop has now taken on a deep green color. Farmers are concerned that the heavy rains have caused extensive erosion and the removal of applied nutrients.