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April 8, 2011

Livestock Producers in M. G. do Sul Prepare to Pay More for Corn

The rain-delayed soybean harvest in Mato Grosso do Sul and the subsequent delayed planting of the safrinha corn crop in the state has many livestock producers in the state worried if there is going to be enough corn in the state to meet the feed demand. The Agriculture and Livestock Federation of Mato Grosso do Sul (Famasul) is expecting a strong increase in corn prices due to higher worldwide corn prices and a production shortage in the state.

Agronomists from Famasul have not yet made an official estimate of the safrinha corn production in the state, but they feel the losses for the safrinha corn crop could be worse than the losses experienced for the soybean crop. Not all the originally intended safrinha corn acres were planted due to the delayed soybean harvest and much of what was planted was planted outside the normal planting window.

Generally safrinha corn in Mato Grosso do Sul needs to be planted in mi-March in order for it to be harvested in August. During the rainy season when the day length is longer and the temperatures are higher, safrinha corn takes about four months to mature. During the dry season when the day length is shorter and the temperatures are lower, it can take up to five months for the corn to mature. Therefore, some of the very late planted safrinha corn in the state may not be mature until September.

If there is a shortage of corn in the state, some additional supplies could be trucked in from other states such as Mato Grosso do Sul, but the high transportation cost could make the situation even worse for the livestock producers. Livestock producers might even consider importing corn from Paraguay due to a favorable currency exchange rate.