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January 6, 2015

Early Soybean Harvest getting underway in Brazil

A few fields of early maturing soybeans in Brazil have been harvested in the states of Mato Grosso and Parana. These early maturing soybeans were the first soybeans planted in Brazil after the expiration of the 90-day soybean free period on September 15th.

The early harvest in Mato Grosso started the week before Christmas in the western part of the state. The yields of these few early harvested soybeans in Mato Grosso are very good in the range of 3,540 to 3,600 kg/ha or 51 to 52 bu/ac. The extra-early maturing soybeans in Brazil usually yield about 30% less than later maturing soybeans because of their very short life cycle. The farmers are attributing the good yields to the near perfect weather during their growing season and the lack of significant insect and disease pressures. The various insect pests were sufficiently controlled with three insecticide applications.

In the state of Parana there are also reports of some early harvest activity. The soybeans near the city of Cascavel in the western part of the state were some of the earliest planted in Brazil and a few of those fields have already been harvested with highly variable yields ranging from 1,500 to 4,000 kg/ha or 21.7 to 58.0 bu/ac.

Most of the soybeans in Parana are rated in good condition, but the eventual statewide yield will depend on what happens in the northern part of the state where the planting was significantly delayed by dry weather in October.

After this early little flurry of harvesting, there should be a lull of 2-3 weeks in harvest activity which corresponds to the lull in planting back in October caused by dry weather. Some of the farmers will now start to apply defoliants to their soybeans in order to speed up the maturity process to allow enough time to plant a second crop of corn. The peak of the Brazilian soybean harvest will occur during the second half of February.