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January 10, 2013

Conab Estimates Brazilian Soybean Crop at 82.6 Million Tons

In their latest assessment of the Brazilian soybean crop, Conab is estimating the 2012/13 Brazilian soybean crop at 82.6 million tons, which is 24.5% greater than the drought reduced crop of 2011/12. They estimated the 2012/13 soybean acreage at 27.3 million hectares or an increase of 9.2% compared to last year. The yield for the 2012/13 soybean crop is estimated at 3,023 kg/ha (43.8 bu/ac), or 14% greater than last year's crop (2,651 kg/ha or 38.4 bu/ac).

The number one soybean producing state continues to be Mato Grosso where the soybean acreage increased 10% in 2012/13 to 7.6 million hectares. The statewide soybean yield in Mato Grosso is expected to be down only slightly compared to last year. The soybean yield in 2012/13 is estimated at 3,127 kg/ha (45.3 bu/ac) compared to last year's yield of 3,130 kg/ha (45.3 bu/ac).

The state of Mato Grosso remains the leader in soybean production estimated at 24.01 million tons (mt), which is 29% of Brazil's total soybean production. The number two state in production is Parana at 15.08 mt (18.2% of the total), followed by Rio Grande do Sul at 12.19 mt (14.7%), Goias at 9.09 mt (11%), Mato Grosso do Sul at 6.05 mt (7.3%), Bahia at 3.81 mt (4.6%), and Minas Gerais at 3.36 mt (4%).

As of December 31st, Conab estimated that the Brazilian soybean crop was 1% still germinating, 47% was in vegetative development, 36% was flowering, 14% was filling pods, and 0.3% was harvested. The only soybean harvesting reported as of the end of 3012 was in the state of Mato Grosso.

Conab is estimating the full-season corn acreage in Brazil at 7.12 million hectares or down 5.7% compared to last year. In nearly all the states, farmers reduced their full-season corn acreage in favor of additional soybean production. The full-season corn yields are estimated at 4,875 kg/ha (75.0 bu/ac) or up 8.8% compared to last year. Conab estimated the 2012/13 Brazilian corn production at 72.19 million tons, 48% of which is from the full-season production.

Therefore, Conab is estimating that 52% of Brazil's corn production will be from the safrinha corn crop planted after the early maturing soybeans are harvested. Conab did not conduct an acreage survey for the safrinha corn crop and they continue to use the same safrinha corn acreage as last year or 7.6 million hectares. They did estimate that the 2012/13 safrinha corn crop will be lower yielding at 4,917 kg/ha (75.7 bu/ac) compared to the 5,133 kg/ha (79 bu/ac) achieved last growing season.