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February 18, 2019

Brazilian Farmers Plant a Record Large Cotton Crop

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

Brazilian farmers did very well with their 2017/18 cotton crop and as a result, they are expected to significantly increase their cotton acreage in 2018/19 to a new record large production.

According to Conab's latest assessment of the crop, Brazilian farmers are expected to increase their cotton acreage 33% to 1.56 million hectares. The largest cotton producing state is Mato Grosso and farmers in the state are expected to increase their cotton acreage 34.9% to 1,049,300 hectares. The second largest producer is the state of Bahia and they are expected to increase their cotton acreage 25.9% to 332,000 hectares.

The vast majority of the cotton in Matos Grosso is safrinha production, which is planted after the first crop of soybeans are harvested. All the safrinha cotton in Mato Grosso has been planted and the crop condition is reported to be very good. The cotton production in Mato Grosso is expected to increase 33.4% to 1.72 million tons of fiber.

The cotton in Bahia is planted as a single crop generally between mid-November and mid-December. Even though the state experienced a dry period during January, the president of the Cotton Producers Association of Bahia (Abapa), does not think it will have an adverse impact on the crop.

Brazil's 2018/19 cotton production is expected to total 2.56 million tons of fiber or an increase of 27.9% compared to last year. The international cotton market is expected to be good for the third straight year and farmers are confident they will have no trouble selling their cotton for a good profit.

If the 2018/19 cotton crop turns out as good as expected, Brazil will be the second largest cotton exporter in the world after the United States.