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February 19, 2015

2014/15 Brazil Soybean Harvest Slower than Last Two Years

The 2014/15 Brazilian soybean harvest is advancing slower than during the last two years. According to a report from Franca Junior Consultoria, 14.6% of the soybeans in Brazil have been harvested compared to 21% in 2014 and 15% in 2013. The soybean harvest advanced 5.2% over the past week and it is the most advanced in Mato Grosso do Sul at 27% followed by Mato Grosso at 24% and Parana at 23%,

The harvest pace is expected to remain slower than average during the coming weeks due to the recent wet weather and the fact that the soybean planting was delayed last October by dry conditions. The near term forecast is calling for generally wet conditions over much of central Brazil and while the wetter conditions may slow the harvest progress, as of yet there have not been any reports of poor seed quality caused by the rainy weather. Generally, the rainfall has been beneficial for the development of the later maturing soybeans that are completing the pod filling process.

Farmers in central Brazil are actively planting their safrinha corn (second crop corn) as soon as the soybeans are harvested and the slow pace of soybean harvesting is also slowing down the pace of safrinha corn planting. The number one safrinha corn producing state is Mato Grosso where approximately 25% of the safrinha corn has been planted followed by Parana where less than 20% of the safrinha corn has been planted. Together, these two states produce more than half of the safrinha corn in Brazil.

Brazil is the second largest corn exporter in the world after the United States and it's the safrinha corn that composes the bulk of Brazil's corn exports. The second crop of corn now represents approximately 60% of the corn produced in Brazil. The first corn crop is concentrated in southern and eastern Brazil and it is used primarily for livestock feed. The second crop of corn is produced mainly in central Brazil and it goes primarily to export.