Dec 21, 2023

Soy Yields in Mato Grosso Down 20% due to Hot and Dry Weather

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

Farmers in Mato Grosso, which is Brazil's largest soybean producing state, are poised to harvest one of the worst soybean crops in the state's history according to the Soybean & Corn Producers Association of Mato Grosso (Aprosoja/MT).

Irregular rainfall and record high temperatures during September-October-November are expected to result in a 20% reduction in statewide yields. The early soybean harvest started before the end of November, which is a month earlier than normal due to the shortened growth cycle caused by heat and moisture stress.

Early soybean yields in the state have been in the range of 10 to 20 sacks per hectare (9 to 18 bu/ac), which is less than half of the normal yields. The early maturing soybeans were hit the hardest because they were setting pods and filling pods under severe moisture stress. The later maturing soybeans are expected to have higher yields, but not high enough to compensate for the lower yields from the early maturing soybeans.

Aprosoja/MT is estimating that Mato Grosso will harvest 36.15 million tons of soybeans or 9.16 million less than in 2022/23. The average yield in the state is estimated at 49.68 sacks per hectare (44.4 bu/ac) compared to 62.30 sacks per hectare in 2022/23 (55.6 bu/ac). Aprosoja/MT surveyed 600 of its members across the state.

The adverse weather is being attributed to a strong El Nino that has resulted in hot and dry conditions across central and northeastern Brazil. In contrast, southern Brazil has been inundated with heavy rains and flooding conditions for the last several months.